The majority of our employees work in lower risk environments and are not exposed to significant occupational health and safety hazards. Nevertheless, we have a programme of initiatives in place to ensure that we continually improve our health and safety performance.
In 2016, the total number of incidents (accidents, occupational diseases, dangerous occurrences, fires and natural cause incidents) reduced by approxiamately 8% compared with 2015 however, when adjusted to take account of the reduction in staff numbers at year end there has been a slight increase in the incident rate. Health and safety incidents are reported to the relevant authorities as required by legislation.
In response to our commitment to protect, not only our people, but the people in the communities in which we operate, a key focus in 2016 has been the deployment of defibrillators in all our buildings in the UK with 70 or more staff. These will be publicly available case of need in an emergency. A donation of 11 defibrillators has been made to an Edinburgh based project called St John and The City and these have been installed on Edinburgh trams and in other key locations.
Additionally, around 8000 staff have already been trained to deliver Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (known as CPR) using the British Heart Foundation’s training kits. This training provides individuals with the skills to potentially save a life wherever they happen to be. One of our Facilities Managers won the Chairman’s Award at the Scottish St Andrews First Aid Awards for her commitment and determination to installing defibrillators and delivering CPR training in a number of our Royal Bank of Scotland branches. In October 2016 Ross McEwan put out a challenge to deliver CPR training to 40,000 RBS staff by end 2017.
We delivered two major remediation programmes in India to ensure adequate life safety arrangements e.g. fire safety, legionella and asbestos management are in place for our colleagues, going over and above local legal requirements.
Read our health and safety performance in detail [PDF 51KB]
Read our health and safety public policy statement [34KB]
Awards and recognition
The Bank won the 2016 Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) Commercial and Business Services Sector Award for Occupational Health and Safety. This was a significant achievement given that this is only the second time the bank has entered the awards programme. We also received our second gold award for how we manage the safety of people driving on business.
Through the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) RBS maintained its score of 82 points for Occupational Health and Safety. In 2016 the industry average score was 48.
All employees are required to complete mandatory online health and safety training which covers the key risks for all employees including fire safety, display screen equipment, manual handling and slips, trips & falls. Additional training is completed by all people managers and building managers in respect of their health and safety responsibilities.
Specialist training includes:
- Emergency training including fire marshal and first aid training is carried out in line with local legal requirements.
- RBS has a driver safety programme which includes risk based training.
- Specialist health and safety training is carried in higher risk areas or for higher risk activities in areas such as our Cash and Coin Centres.
- Bespoke health and safety training programmes are in place for key roles including Institute of Occupational Safety & Health (IOSH) Managing Safety for Property Managers, IOSH Directing Safely for our Projects Managers and Chartered Member IOSH and National Examination Board in Occupational Safety & Health (NEBOSH) qualifications for our Health and Safety professionals.
- In our Real Estate Asset Management team, the part of the business that manages distressed assets, training on health and safety protocols is delivered to all new asset managers.
In the UK our cash and coin centres continued to be accredited to OHSAS 18001.