The implementation of a new worldwide occupational health and safety standard has moved a step closer.
Delegates from across the world met in Trinidad and Tobago and spent a week (19-24 January) in discussions about the different clauses of the standard, which is in its draft stage.
They gave consideration to more than 2,800 comments made about the draft during the consultation stage.
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) will now produce a further draft based on delegates’ suggestions. It is hoped the standard, known as ISO 45001, will be complete by October 2016.
The meeting was hosted by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), in conjunction with the Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards.
Richard Jones, IOSH Head of Policy and Public Affairs, said: “We’re delighted that this conference has been so successful and that important progress has been made in developing this new standard ISO 45001.”
He added: “It’s been fantastic to have the support of the Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards and the Minister of Trade, Industry, Investment and Communication and great that delegates have had the opportunity to get to know our Caribbean Branch members.”
Delegates who convened at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Port of Spain split into small, multinational task groups. They were each responsible for examining different clauses in the draft.
The standard is likely to replace OHSAS 18001. It will require that health and safety is managed in a systematic and integral way within organisations and is not just looked on as an added extra.
The ultimate aim is that this standard will lead to improved health and safety performance and help drive down the number of deaths, injuries and illnesses caused by work. According to statistics from the International Labour Organization (ILO), about 6,300 people die every day in the world as a result of work-related injury or disease – more than 2.3 million deaths per year.
Members of IOSH’s Caribbean branch attended a meeting with the delegates during the event, where they heard about the background to standards development, the different types in use, how ISO 45001 has been developed and what its potential impact will be.