Background Information and Purpose
The Occupational Safety and Health Act regulates that each
employer is responsible to provide a hazard-free work environment for employees.
Since there is a direct link between on-the-job injuries and safety programs to
be managed by Human Resources and has appointed a County Safety Officer to serve
as program manager.
In January 1991, the Board of Commissioners appointed a central
occupational safety and health committee. The safety Officer serves as liaison
between the central committee and the Board of Commissioners, Risk management
Committee, department heads, departmental safety and health committees,
employees, outside agencies and the public. Safety concerns should be directed
to the County Safety Officer who arranges for safety committees and otherwise
researches and reports on safety issues and concerns.
For safety matters having County-wide impact that require a
written policy and/or procedure, the Safety Officer will prepare safety
supplements and distribute to department heads and elected officials.
Supplements should be kept in this section of the procedural manual; a master
listing of supplements is provided for recordkeeping.
OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH POLICY STATEMENT
It is the policy of Douglas County that as employers, the County
will, at all times, and at every level of management, provide and maintain a
safe working environment for all employees. The goal of all occupational safety
and health programs are focused on prevention of accidents.
No phase of County operation or administration has greater
importance than the safety of employees. This responsibility will be met by the
promotion of safe working procedures and practices among all employees and by
maintaining both facility and equipment in safe operation. It is also intended
to provide and maintain safe and healthful working conditions and establish and
insist upon safe work methods and practices at all times.
The County believes employees are its most important resource.
Therefore, a principal responsibility of the Board of Commissioners is to
provide and maintain a safe operation thereby ensuring the safety of each
employee. A high priority will always be place on safe operations ensuring the
safety of employees.
Our philosophy is service with safety. To accomplish
this, all levels of management and supervision have primary responsibility for
the safety, health and well-being of all employees. In turn, all employees have
responsibility to abide by the safety and health procedures and practices, and
to actively participate in maintaining a safe and healthy work environment.
Therefore, it becomes everyone's responsibility within Douglas
County to unite and work in a cooperative effort to make service with
safety a success. Managers are responsible for controlling accidents through
the promotion of safety and enforcement of safety rules. Employees, in turn,
have a responsibility to themselves, other workers, and County to aid in this
endeavor by following established safe procedures.
BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
OF DOUGLAS COUNTY, OREGON
Doug Robertson, Chair
Joyce Morgan, Commissioner
As an employer, Douglas County is responsible under the
Occupational Safety and Health Act to provide a hazard free work environment for
its employees, this is supplemented by Oregon Administrative Rules 437.40 -
Safety Committees. In order to meet the specific safety needs of County
employees in an organized and efficient manner, occupational safety and health
policies and procedures have been formulated to serve as a foundation for
building an effective program. Once in place, they serve as an efficient tool
to improve workplace operations, control hazards, reduce accidents and losses
and increase productivity.
Safety shall be an integral part of all operations and both
management and employees will be involved in safety and loss prevention
planning, development and implementation. The aim is to make safety efforts so
successful that elimination of accidents and injuries is not just a goal, but a
way of life. The objective is "no accidents" and it is considered to be
Every employee will be involved and have responsibility to the
occupational safety and health program. Direction will flow from the Board of
Commissioners through the Risk Management Committee to the Department Heads,
then to supervisors, Department Safety Committee and the to employees.
Specific responsibilities of each group will be discussed in the Procedure
Section of this policy.
Authority has been delegated by the Board of Commissioners to the
Risk Management Committee to establish rules and procedures to limit exposure to
losses. The Board of Commissioners will appoint a County Safety Officer who
will represent the Risk Management Committee to the Central Occupational Safety
and Health Committee, department heads, departments safety committee, employees,
and the public.
A County-wide central occupational safety and health committee
will be appointed by the Board of Commissioners to establish policy, set
direction, oversee safety and loss prevention functions, receive employee input,
conduct workplace inspections, review accidents, and promote safe attitudes.
Members will serve as liaison between the Committee and employees.
Larger departments and those with high risk jobs will have a
department safety committee. All departments will have a safety or loss
prevention program specific to that department.
County employees have responsibility to both themselves and
coworkers to reduce risks and prevent accidents by keeping safe attitudes and
choosing safe behaviors. Hazardous conditions shall be reported.
Organization and Responsibility
1. Board of Commissioners. The Board of Commissioners is
committed to promotion of safe working procedures and practices among all
employees. To accomplish this, responsibilities have been assigned and authority
given as outlined in this policy, Board Orders, and County Personnel Rules.
2. Risk Management Committee. The Board of Commissioners
has implemented a program to manage Douglas County's exposure to risk by
establishing a Risk Management Committee. Members are: County Counsel, Chief
Financial Officer, Human Resources Director, Public Works Director, and
Sheriff. Authority has been delegated to the Risk Management Committee to
establish rules and procedures to limit exposure to losses. The Risk Management
Committee assumes department heads will commit to the occupational safety and
health needs of employees through their management planning. The committee
delegates authority to the Safety Officer and Central Safety Committee to direct
the areas of employee safety and health.
3.County Safety Officer. The Board of Commissioners will
appoint the County Safety Officer who will represent and speak for the Risk
Management Committee to the Central Safety and Health Committee, department
heads, departments safety and health committee, employees, outside agencies, and
the public. The Safety Officer will coordinate safety activities and keep the
Risk Management Committee informed of these activities. The Safety Officer
shall be responsible to maintain required Federal and/or State recordkeeping:
OSHA 300 log to be kept on file for five years. The most recent log shall be
posted annually from February 1 through April 30 in a conspicuous place or
places where notices to employees are customarily posted. The complete file is
available from Safety Officer.
Accident form 801 and accident investigation form will be kept for five years
following claim closure.
Safety Committee minutes will be kept for three years.
4. Department Heads. The Department head will commit
adequate department resources to workplace safety and health. Authority and
responsibility will be integrated into the management structure and be clearly
defined and implemented. Each department will have written safety and loss
prevention procedures specific to the department, workforce, work site (s), and
work hazards to supplement the County Safety and Health policy. (See Appendix
for suggested areas of coverage.) Development of these procedures should be
completed using input from management, department safety committee members, and
employees. It shall be communicated to all employees and a copy be provided to
them. The county Safety Officer will also receive a copy. The County Safety
Officer is available to assist in development of safety and loss prevention
Department heads will retain final responsibility for safety
functions within the department. This will manifest itself in a charge-back
program, whereby department's budget. This charge-back program will have a
security factor built in to account for single catastrophic events whereby, on
individual claims, charges will not exceed $2,000.
Safety performance will be considered in management and
supervisor performance evaluations. Annually, a summary of departmental safety
activities will be made available to the Board of Commissioners and department
5. Supervisors. Supervisors, through department head
delegation, have the primary responsibility for the safety of employees working
under their supervision. Supervisors, must understand the hazards associated
with a job and potential effects. As representatives of management, they are
delegated responsibility for carrying out certain objectives as follows:
Follow proper hiring and placement
Become familiar with rules and policy set
forth in both the County and Department Safety and Health Policies: enforce
policies; contribute ideas to management.
Investigate and promptly report all
accidents in detail. See that injured employees receive prompt medical
attention and equipment is repaired.
Receive employee recommendations how to
eliminate hazards and unsafe work practices in the workplace.
The supervisor has the primary role to ensure that employees know
and follow department safety procedures and work practices, and will teach
employees how to work safely. This can be accomplished at both the new employee
orientation and in monthly safety meetings. Generally, the supervisor will:
Be responsible to provide a safe work
place, personal protective equipment, and proper equipment and tools.
Assume responsibility for employee and
volunteer training of safe work practices on a regular schedule in the areas of
proper equipment operation, use of personal protective equipment and emergency
Safety performance will be considered in supervisor performance
6. Employees. Safeness, as a state of mind, is a work
style and lifestyle that keeps individuals on the safe side. Safeness is
reducing unnecessary risks and preventing accidents by keeping a safe attitude,
choosing safe behavior, and creating safe conditions. The active interest and
cooperation of each employee is vital to the success of the County occupational
safety and health program. Therefore, safeness is the responsibility of each
employee. All employees will recognize the following responsibilities of
Keep a safe attitude, take personal
responsibility for department safety procedures, known and support the safety
Choose safe behaviors that prevent
accidents and reduce risks, keep a clean work site, use personal protective
Participate in department safety meetings,
problem solving groups and job hazard surveys.
Report hazards to supervisor, department
safety officer, department head, or County safety officer.
Participate in training for new employees
and operation of equipment.
It is expected that all Douglas County employees will promote
safety attitudes by showing a proper safety example. Safety performance will be
considered in performance evaluations.
SAFETY COMMITTEE DUTIES AND FUNCTIONS
Central Occupational Safety and Health Committee.
In order to meet Oregon OSHA regulation’s OAR 437-001-0765 requiring employers
to establish safety committees, the Board of Commissioners authorizes and
supports a central safety committee to oversee the County-wide occupational
safety and health program. Further recognition and support are given to
department safety committees. The Board has a commitment to provide safe
working conditions for employees. To this end, the central committee’s purpose
is to promote occupational safety and health, direct County-wide safety programs
and to recommend changes that promote safe working conditions which will in turn
provide a more productive working environment.
Central Committee Membership.
The central committee shall consist of the County Safety Officer and not more
than twelve members equally representing employer and employees. Departments
that represent major work activities of the County and those with high risk jobs
will be represented on the committee. Other departments will alternately place
representatives to the committee. Members are appointed by the Board of
Commissioners for an initial term of one year with the possibility of
reappointment. Members will be paid for time spent in meetings and training.
Central Committee Meetings.
The committee shall meet monthly at various County locations. The County Safety
Officer will serve as Chair. A written agenda for conducting meetings will be
distributed prior to the meeting. A report on the safety record, injury records
and other incidents related to safety, and recent safety inspection results
shall be presented.
The County Safety Officer will provide for recordkeeping and distributing
minutes of the central safety committee meeting. All reports, evaluations
and recommendations of the committee shall be made a part of the minutes.
Records or minutes will be made of meetings and sent to each committee member
and department head. They shall be posted for employee review.
Duties and functions of Central Safety and Health Committee.
Specific duties shall include:
Promote safety functions throughout the
County. Develop County-wide policy recommendations on issues related to
workplace, safety, and loss prevention.
Hazard assessment. Safety inspections
will be conducted to locate and to identify potential accident-causing
situations and to offer possible sultans to the problems. This could include
buildings, grounds, vehicles, equipment and job sites. The inspections will be
conducted by members of the Central Safety Committee, the Safety Officer and
could also include a combination of Department Heads, department safety officers
and committee members. A copy of the inspection report will be given to the
Department Head and Department safety officer. If corrective action is
necessary, completion dates will be set. Inspections will be conducted
quarterly. Annual surveys will be conducted by Oregon-OSHA safety consultant.
Hazard prevention and control.
When a possible hazard or unsafe work practice is noticed by an employee, it
shall be reported to the supervisor or central safety committee member
immediately. This can be either verbal or written. (Sample form attached.) The
County Safety Officer is also available to receive the report. Where
appropriate, the committee will act on suggestions and make recommendations to
the affected departments.
claims history and investigate significant accidents including equipment and
property damage incidents, on-the-job injury accidents, illness and death, and
recommend corrective action necessary to prevent future occurrences.
The committee will be trained to understand its purpose, applicable rules
governing its operation, hazard identification and accident investigation. The
committee will in turn provide training to department heads, department safety
officers and / or committee members and employees.
Department Safety and Health
an adjunct to each department head's commitment to safety, larger departments
and those with high risk jobs will have a department safety committee. The
committee will play an integral part in development and maintenance of the
department's loss prevention effort. The committee will receive suggestions of
work hazards from employees and suggest correction to the department head.
It is strongly
encouraged that a safety committee be established in each department. However,
as an alternative, it is encouraged that department heads appoint an employee
to be responsible for safety functions within the department. It is further
suggested that at the monthly department staff meeting, an agenda item would be
the monthly department staff meeting, an agenda item would be safety and loss
prevention. In this manner, employee concerns regarding safety issues would be
heard and receive response.
Douglas County personnel Rule 20.1
Policy and Procedures