Safety culture in oil and gas : factors that contribute to cultures of non-report
SubjectCulture of non-report; Human safety; minor incidents; Non-reporting practices; Safety culture; safety performance
This study addresses cultures of non-report in the oil and gas industry in Alberta, Canada. The purpose of the study was to determine what human, workplace/organizational, and external factors contribute to the presence of a culture of non-report within contractor organizations that provide construction and technical services in Alberta’s oil and gas sector. The participant organization was a multinational that provides construction and technical services on an oil sands site north of Fort McMurray, Alberta. The study centered on observations made by 19 personnel working for the participant organization. Data was collected through one-on-one, semi-structured interviews, and results were analyzed thematically.The results of the study conclude the following five core factors contribute to the presence of cultures of non-report amongst organizations that provide construction and technical services: workplace pressures from oil and gas companies/site owners, contractor organizations and coworkers/other industry professionals related to safety performance metrics; ineffective reporting processes and procedures, particularly for minor incidents; lack of trust between workers and their supervisory/management and safety personnel; fear of repercussions; and workplace environments that negatively impact self-image and social perceptions. These pressures can begin to be shifted by developing solutions such as the ones proposed in this paper that incorporate the human side of safety as a part of safety culture and supportive organizational messaging, centering on the humanistic components of organizational culture with the goal of helping organizations and their personnel value human safety over safety performance metrics.
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