Behind the Scenes: Workplace Safety in Our India Refineries
By: Yeo Yu Teng
At the end of a long day at work, we all want to return to our homes or loved ones safely. After all, having a safe and healthy work environment is a fundamental principle and right.
From the moment he joined Musim Mas more than 10 years ago, Vincent and his team have been fostering a safe working environment for everyone.
Today on World Day for Safety and Health at Work, let’s learn more about Vincent and his journey as the first safety personnel in our India refinery.
The first safety personnel in our Nellore refinery
Meet J. Kolastic Vincent Paul, the Environment, Health, and Safety Manager at South India Krishna Oil & Fats (SIKOF), part of Musim Mas Group.
When Vincent first joined the company in 2012, he didn’t have a team, as he was one of the first few pioneer employees at SIKOF’s refinery in Nellore, India. Over the years, he has built a team of 5 employees responsible for workplace safety.
The initial years
Vincent’s journey wasn’t one without challenges. During the initial years, there weren’t any fixed processes or mentors to guide him as the refinery was newly in operation. He began by understanding the gaps and requirements needed to comply with safety laws and regulations. Next, Vincent proposed to his management the support that was required.
He established and executed workplace safety policies and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) such as Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), induction and workplace safety training, work permit systems, occupational health centres, job safety analysis, and risk assessments.
The COVID-19 pandemic
Another challenge was during the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020. The refinery had to continue operating because the plant produces food essentials like cooking oil and margarine for local consumers in India. Vincent was one of the key members of the business continuity plan, where he and his team implemented various safety protocols. This includes ensuring safe distancing and emphasizing the importance of wearing masks/face shields and other PPEs.
Why workplace safety is important to Vincent
Ensuring a safe and healthy work environment isn’t just a job requirement but a personal mission that Vincent takes very seriously. He feels a sense of pride when he identifies and addresses any unsafe act or condition in the workplace. Vincent is committed to creating awareness among all employees about the hazards that exist in the workplace and educating them on the best practices to mitigate these risks.
Vincent has always been passionate about workplace safety and the importance it holds for both employees and the company as a whole. He firmly believes that upholding Musim Mas’ reputation requires strict adherence to safety policies and procedures.
What keeps Vincent motivated at work
Vincent’s motivation at work comes from his love for finding innovative ways to ensure the safety of his colleagues. Vincent is also highly motivated by the support he receives from his team and top management. Knowing that his efforts are appreciated and valued by those above him helps Vincent to stay focused and committed to his work. He feels fulfilled knowing that he’s making a positive impact on the lives of his colleagues. For Vincent, workplace safety is more than just a job; it’s a personal mission that he takes very seriously.