Stop Work Authority & Communication Safety

Stop Work Authority & Communication

This week we will be discussing Stop Work Authority & Communication.  The goal is to raise awareness of Stop Work Authority and improve our communication as it applies to safety.  This week we will define what Stop Work Authority is and how it should be used.

Often statements like “if you see something, say something” or “if it doesn’t seem right, you probably shouldn’t do it”, are two statements that involve identifying something and doing something about it.  We’ve completed many investigations over the past few years and found that the use of a properly initiated stop work, most likely would’ve prevented many of the injuries that we’ve experienced.  As discussed in the past, 92% of the accidents that occur in the industry are a result of an unsafe act, not an unsafe condition.  If we can identify these unsafe acts and get employees to engage in a stop work, then we can see a significant reduction in our losses.

During the time of employment, every JJ White employee should receive orientation training including the viewing of the CEO/President’s Video on Stop Work Authority.  In this Video and during our orientation training everyone is empowered to use Stop Work Authority.  Our Project Managers and Superintendents shall reinforce this message immediately following the training and prior to them starting work.  Unfortunately, using Stop Work Authority is easier said than done.

The Stop Work Authority process requires an employee to make an observation, interject their concerns and work with the at risk employee to find a solution.  The most difficult part is interjecting and letting a fellow employee know that they’re possibly putting themselves at risk.  The risks and rewards of using Stop Work Authority:

  • Risks– The employee not receiving the feedback as you intended or if you don’t say something they get injured.
  • Rewards– The employee thanks you and appreciates you looking out for them and/or they’re not injured.