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Health and Safety

We strive for a ‘zero harm’ culture, in which every employee takes personal responsibility for their own safety as well as that of their colleagues. We continually promote excellent safety behaviours to ensure all our people and contractors work in a safe environment. We invest heavily in safety training, and strive to meet the most stringent international health and safety standards.

    We have established the following ambitious safety targets for 2018-2020:
  • Zero fatalities and injuries caused by rock mass falling by implementing remote-control mining equipment among other measures
  • Reduced fatalities and injuries resulted from road accidents of both employees and contractors by 10% compared to 2017
  • Zero fatalities and injuries from open fire, explosives and flammable materials
  • Zero fatalities and injuries from working at height

By embedding best practices in everything we do, we will continue to improve our safety performance.

Who is responsible

Who is responsible
Risk management

Each year, we identify and assess risks across the Group and create risk maps for all our working processes and locations. We then develop detailed programmes to help us reduce these risks. We carry out an annual qualitative hazardous risk assessment, and inform employees of the results through a range of communication channels. In 2017, we implemented Critical Risks Management (CRM) system, identifying critical risks. To reduce the potential impact of critical risks at all our operations, our CRM includes a health and safety action plan for all critical risks, and for each risk we have identified five main directions of impact, and at least two preventative actions for each direction of impact.

We follow a Shift Risk Assessment (SRA) model to raise employee awareness of workplace dangers, manage risks promptly, and control the accuracy of our risk assessments. We implement SRA most rigorously in hazardous operational areas, for example automobile transport, mines, and plant and power supply.

Workplace accidents

While we are working on reducing our overall number of fatalities and decreasing LTIFR among Polymetal employees and contractors, we will continue to dedicate significant resources and implement additional measures to do all we can to safeguard our employees from future injury.

Find historical and up-to-date information about workplace accidents in our production press releases.

Engagement and training

We go beyond what’s required by regulations to achieve the goals of zero fatalities and injuries. We have taken voluntary steps to implement best practices that encourage a culture of safety. Training and engaging employees and contractors is essential to achieving our zero-harm goal. Polymetal’s Human Resources Management System sets out our procedures for recruitment and assigning employees with specific skills, as well as for providing training. We clarify competence requirements for each relevant job description and heads of business units identify training needs. We provide training in occupational health, and industrial, electric and fire safety.

Оur employees and contractors attend refresher safety courses and some of those involved in dangerous works undergo mandatory safety training. To motivate employees about the importance of safety, we hold contests and reward departments that achieve zero occurrences and incidents. We also publish our ‘safety barometer’ in our corporate newspaper, and on information desks and portals.

When selecting a contractor, we check track record of the potential partners and refuse working with those which have low safety performance or high risks. This procedure helps us to screen contractors before working with them. We also require a safety system then compare it with Polymetal’s OHSMS and when working together we use the system which has the strictest rules and make safety compliance a part of any contract.

Emergency preparedness

The main principle of our health and safety program is to be prepared for potential risks and emergencies before they could occur. In doing so, we ensure that our employees and facilities are educated, trained, and equipped to deal with emergencies on a regular basis as well as keeping our facilities and policies up to date and effective by complying with local and international emergency preparedness obligations and requirements.

The best way to prevent harmful consequences resulting from an emergency is to be prepared. For this reason, we perform simulated emergency events and deliver training at least once annually for all employees at each of our hazardous facilities. Furthermore, at the most high-risk sites, we conduct more frequent emergency preparation sessions, sometimes on a monthly basis. We also keep up-to-date emergency response plans at all of our facilities.

An integral component of preparedness is knowing where and how emergencies may occur. We thus constantly look to identify potential accidents that could have an adverse effect on the environment or on our employees. In doing so, we inspect audits and reports by state controlling bodies, inspection results and reports, environmental impact assessments, project safety examinations and hazardous production facilities inspections. In order to understand and prevent environmental accidents, we assess environmental monitoring data and historic accidents that have negatively impacted the environment and work closely with local environmental bodies.

In ensuring emergency preparedness on a company-wide basis, we comply with the requirements and legal obligations of the countries in which we operate. In addition, each Polymetal facility possesses Accident Prevention plans, developed in collaboration with local emergency authorities. We also train our in-house rescuers and have contracted professional companies who specialize in life-saving services and accident prevention.

To maintain our emergency preparedness on a constant basis, we proactively enhance our OHSMS, ensure that all of our operations possess full licensing for all relevant safety activities, make regular audits of all facilities in which hazardous activity is carried out and sign mandatory liability insurance agreements to any indemnify harm caused by potential accidents in hazardous production facilities.