OUR PROGRESS REPORT CARD
In 2021, driven on by our relentless focus on safety, we delivered our best recordable injury frequency (RIF) performance on record for the third year in a row. We improved our RIF rate by 23% from our 2018 base year and by 2% from the previous year. We accomplished this result while leading our organization through the global pandemic, effectively deploying enhanced safety measures and encouraging and making available vaccinations. While we are proud of our progress, we are also very saddened that a contractor suffered a fatal workplace injury at one of our facilities in 2021. This incident highlights that safety must always remain the number one focus of all workers, and it further strengthens our safety resolve.
SETTING THE BAR HIGHER
As we pursue our 2030 goal, business unit leaders are engaged in the evolution of our safety vision. Our plan includes further strengthening our safety-first culture by continuing to involve employees in developing solutions, listening to their concerns and ensuring they feel comfortable talking to their peers about potential hazards or unsafe behaviors. Continuing to provide safety learning opportunities for our leaders, safety professionals and employees will enhance our efforts. We know the journey ahead will be challenging but vitally important as we continue to prioritize the safety of our employees and their families.
Here are some ways our various locations have helped us achieve a safer work environment.
Safety is a priority starting on day one. Within our Large Power Systems Division in East Peoria, Illinois, we incorporated feedback from operators, manufacturing engineers and subject matter experts to define the key skills for each job, improved standard work and provided job-specific training by validated trainers to certify new hires prior to releasing them to perform their jobs. Since this change, recordable injuries to newly hired employees have been dramatically reduced.
Practicing good ergonomics protects employees against injury. Our Grenoble, France, facility implemented several innovative approaches to ergonomic design. This included evaluation of traditional ergonomic risks, as well as an assessment of the work environment within the area and operator feedback about the work. These approaches identified several ways we could use technology to perform a task and protect employees from potential harm. This facility recently celebrated one year free from ergonomic-related injuries.
The Caterpillar facility in Thiruvallur produces structures for off-highway truck frames. We formed a diverse team of line operators, line section facilitators, section managers, manufacturing engineers and the operations excellence team to review the risk analyses for the various stations. As a result of the project, we implemented a collaborative robot in two stations to eliminate fall risks, bending at the waist, pinch points and repetitive motions of loading and unloading the station manually. In another station, we installed a common adapter to eliminate the need for manual change-out in between models, reducing the risk for pinch points, slips and trips, as well as grip force injuries. These improvements not only improved safety, but they also engaged employees with the workstations to identify issues and develop solutions. Safety, efficiency and employee fatigue all improved substantially.
The development of our Product Support & Logistics Division’s Safety Application Suite has allowed for a one-stop location where facilities can access all available safety resources in a multitude of languages. Translated materials have helped drive a better understanding of the materials and improved the quality of data accrued from non-English speaking locations. We increased participation now that the suite is accessible from any mobile device or computer. The project has increased diversity and inclusion within our safety programs and provided our sites with an enhanced ability to engage directly with employees, regardless of location or language.