Solid Concrete Walls

Safety Director

By Ethan Davis

Management is ultimately responsible for ensuring that a safety program is implemented and maintained. Management needs to provide the commitment, leadership, and resources. However, it is common and practical to delegate some implementation duty to an appointed safety director, while maintaining overall control and monitoring the performance of the safety program.

The safety director or designee should meet the following criteria.

• conceptually committed to safety and health in the workplace

• has or is given the time to develop and implement the program

• has or is given sufficient authority to develop and implement the program

• is supported by adequate resources to develop and implement the program

• sincerely cares about employee welfare

• has a high degree of credibility with the employees

In some situations, the safety director function can be added to an existing position. In larger companies or companies with high accident frequencies or severities or inherently hazardous processes, a full-time person is often required.

The success of your program hinges on the success of the individual you choose, and he or she cannot succeed without your full cooperation and support. Remember, that when you appoint someone as your safety director and delegate the authority to manage the program, the ultimate responsibility for safety in your workplace rests with you.