Ensuring Work-place safety for its employees, Spectro is now OHSAS 18001:2007 certified

The strength of any organization, which is either into manufacturing different items or providing any kind of services to its customers, depends substantially on its work-force. Even though in contemporary professional work-places a lot of emphasis is generally given on modern & sophisticated instrumentation and a number of industrial processes and analyses rely on automated control mechanisms, still the importance and superiority of human beings over machines cannot be ignored. Spectro Analytical Labs Pvt. Ltd. realizes this truth, and in order to instill and cement faith amongst its existing & prospective employees and customers, has successfully acquired the OHSAS 18001:2007 certification. Spectro has been accorded this certification on the basis of its demonstrated ability to provide a safe and healthy/disease-free environment at its work-place, by being able to manage & control various kinds of hazards and risks. The certification is applicable to its various activities like testing and inspection of various products, besides other services like Calibration, consultancy, training, and laboratory project management. This Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series (OHSAS) standard specifies requirements for an occupational health & safety (OH&S) management system, so as to enable an organization to keep in check its OH&S risks and better its OH&S performance. The OH&S management system should be an integral part of the overall management system of an organization.
Health & safety of the workers or employees are the essential ingredients for enhancing productivity as well as efficiency of any business enterprise. According to an estimate based on a survey conducted by an international body, annually more than 2.3 million workers or employees lose their lives due to work-related accidents (400 million occupational accidents) and diseases/illness (260 million work-related diseases). The prodigious economic losses that result due to such accidents amount to approximately 4% of world’s gross national product. These losses can be reduced significantly by proper implementation of an occupational health & safety management system like OHSAS.
The concept of occupational safety & health management system is not a new one and has been in place in many countries for more than 100 years, but the main problem was the availability of surplus certifiable OH&S specifications developed by many international agencies. This burgeoning of specifications, which were quite fundamentally different, led to confusions amongst the business enterprises and the need for a single specification that would allow for acceptable third party certifications, was highly acknowledged. As a result in 1999 due to a concerted effort from various independent group of international standard bodies & certification bodies (called ‘registrars’), a consensus was drawn & took the shape of OHSAS 18001. The structure of this specification was based on ISO 14001 (Environmental management system) & ISO 9001 (Quality management system for ‘Processes’), although OHSAS 18001 does not have the status of an ISO standard. Hence this ease of compatibility between these different management systems made it possible for organizations to integrate these discrete systems into a single total quality management system. This specification has been modeled on ‘Plan-Do-Check-Act’. Some of the various international bodies that participated in its formulation were British Standards Institution, Bureau Veritas Quality International, Det Norske Veritas, SGS Yarsley International, Standards Australia, and National Quality Assurance.
There have been some significant changes in the OHSAS 18001:1999 & the latest edition came out in 2007. The changes reflect the increasing acceptance & awareness regarding this specification amongst various companies, and according to an official figure OHSAS 18001 is being followed in more than 80 countries & by approximately 16000 certified companies. The key changes in OHSAS 18001:2007 are as follows:

  • bulletGreater emphasis laid on ‘health’ rather than just 'safety'.
  • bulletOHSAS 18001 is now referred to as a 'Standard', & not just a specification.
  • bulletSignificant improvement in alignment with ISO 14001:2004 throughout the standard and improved compatibility with ISO 9001:2000.
  • bulletThe 'Plan-Do-Check-Act' model diagram is only given in the introduction.
  • bulletThe term 'tolerable risk' has been substituted by the term ‘acceptable risk’.
  • bulletThe term 'accident' has been included in the term 'incident'

Benefits of implementing OHSAS 18001 by an organization:

  • bulletSubstantial improvement in organizational performance due to the implementation and combined effects of environmental, health & safety management systems.
  • bulletReduction in chances of accidents and health-damaging incidents at work-place.
  • bulletImproved compliance to legal requirements of any country.
  • bullet Ensuring sustainability in any business by effecting reduction in financial losses arising out of accidents and subsequent production interruptions & breakdowns.
  • bullet Lower insurance costs incurred by an organization.
  • bullet Improved & enhanced faith amongst employees & customers.