Q."Safety is a management function"; comment as a manager of a mine how would you ensure compliance with the provisions of the Mines Act and Regulations by all concerned? Chalk out an organizational set-up fixing and integrating accident control responsibility into management operation.
Safety is a management function because the root causes of all accidents often relate to the management system. They may be due to management policies, procedure, supervision, control and their effectiveness and training etc. Accidents are caused due to weakness in the management system and also create their operational problems. Every function of an organization must be managed, i.e. the action must be planned, organized, integrated (sometimes called co-ordinate or compromised), measured, controlled and communicated. From safety point of view, integration is probably the most important activity for the management to achieve the desired goal of optimal productivity with safety. Instead of compromising safety principles for the sake of expediency, convenience or any other reasons management should concentrate on integrating safety into the total system so that it assumes a rightful place in the scheme of things. Therefore safety is very much a management function.
As per sec. 18(4) of the Mines Act 1952, Manager of every mine shall see that all operations carried on in connection with the mine are conducted in accordance with the provision of the Act & of the Regulations, Rules, By-laws and orders made there under. Reg. 44 of MMR 1961 has enjoined "duties and responsibilities" of Manager and as per one of the provision of this Regulation, "the Manager shall assign to every official and competent person his particular duties defining his sphere of responsibility and shall take all possible steps to ensure that every such person understands, carries out and enforces the provisions in proper manner" since all officials and competent persons have obligations to maintain the production of the mine also, their safety responsibilities need to be "integrated" with their "operational" functions and a suitable organizational set-up is necessary to implement this "integrated" concept. Such a set-up is shown below:-
Symbolically, the model represents the integration of accident control responsibility into management operation. The system functions as follows: -
i) Safety wing guides the Manager regarding the compliance level of the safety laws and the accident prevention program. ii) The Manager, though pressurized by many production problems, will incorporate the main elements of the program in his decision-making process iii) When decision is made to adopt a safety recommendation, directives are issued to the "line-personnel" like Dy.Manager, Asst Manager etc. for implementation. Safety committee and workmen's inspectors are main organs of worker's participation in safety management and the input information's reg. safety programs should include their views. iv) The first line supervisors (mate & foreman) execute the safety directives keeping in view the technical aspect of the problem and behavioral aspect of the workers within his area of responsibility. v) Taken collectively all operational plans actions, an industrial climate or "organizational environment" is produced where men, machine and environment interact to accomplish the goal of the organization. vi) Safety wing evaluates the quality and effectiveness of all the safety directives & compliance level after receiving all feed-back information from both 'lines' & 'staff' personnel and also by visual inspection of the work place and environment accompanying the mine-officials. vii) When the interaction results in "accidents", action as per statute is taken, investigation is made, report prepared, counter measures are recommended and communicate to the Manager and then the...