Taiheiyo continues to improve safety measures, readiness

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

EVEN before the 7.2-magnitude earthquake and typhoon Yolanda hit the Visayas late last year, Taiheiyo Cement Philippines Inc. (TCPI) has been improving its safety and emergency procedures.

The company has since adopted more improvements and conducted various trainings to enhance the employees’ preparedness from minor to nerve-breaking emergencies, according to Engr. Nilo R. Yap, TCPI Environment and Safety Department (ESD) senior manager.

Yap said that during their earthquake and tsunami drill last Aug. 16, the participants underwent an exercise in adopting outlined emergency and safety procedures that proved to be useful during the Oct. 15 quake and the Nov. 8 super typhoon.


The drill served as a means for ESD staff to observe how employees acted with which the improvements and adoption of corrective measures were applied when the real things happened last year.

With the assumption of Seiichi Nakamura as senior vice president for operations, TCPI redefined and gave more flesh to its safety first policy, including the conduct of regular safety patrol and acquisition of a fire suit with self-breathing apparatus, a personal protective equipment needed for pre-heater heavy de-clogging.

The safety first policy led the company to educate employees and third party personnel to be conscious about and implement the KY discipline. KY refers to Kiken and Yochi, Japanese terms that refer to identifying “hazard or danger” and do “prediction.”

With it, management promoted top-of-the-mind awareness and strict observance of the “Safety 24 Principle,” as well as the improvement of safety education that resulted in the revision of safety education materials.

Employees have since been required to take and pass the safety exam and be issued a safety sticker valid for only one year if they pass the test.

5S approach

To underscore safety in the day-to-day operations at the plant, Nakamura had employees indoctrinated in the practice of housekeeping using the 5S approach.

Regular employees and contract workers spend 30 minutes every day by 1 p.m. as they report back to work from lunch break for housekeeping in their areas and work stations using the 5S system.

The 5S method stands for sort, systematize, shine, standardize and self-discipline, said Romeo M. Gebilaguin, ESD section head.

Last February, management had key people of the company and selected suppliers undergo training on how to promptly and properly handle and transport victims, and on how to properly drive an ambulance and handle the victim on board.

Experts from the Emergency Rescue Unit Foundation (ERUF) placed the 13 participants in scenarios on responding to emergencies, especially in attending to serious injuries.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 28, 2014.


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