Occupational and industrial safety

Establishing and maintaining safe working conditions has been the Company’s core priority from the start. Health and safety of our employees are the top value for us. DTEK ENERGY spares no effort in this area. Everyone, from members of the Supervisory Board to rank-and-file employees, is involved in OHS matters. Year after year, the Company has been channeling its efforts to create a safe working environment and, ultimately, to reduce occupational injury rates. The Company provides all the financing required to support these efforts. For instance, in the past three years more than UAH 1.2 bln were invested in the occupational safety.

DTEK ENERGY’s investment priorities related to occupational health and safety remain unchanged and are:

  • creating safe environment at workplaces;
  • providing employees with efficient personal protective equipment;
  • training and increasing the levels of OHS knowledge among employees;
  • personnel medical support; and
  • bringing the main assets to compliance with the occupational safety laws and regulations. 

The efforts are currently concentrated on promoting safety culture among all members of personnel and developing leadership qualities and absolute commitment to ensuring occupational safety among the management. This is why the Company has developed a number of OHS initiatives and is currently implementing this program in all business blocks. The progress is constantly monitored by the Management Board and the Supervisory Board.

On the one hand, the efforts to enhance occupational safety are aimed at creating a safe workplace for employees. The other objective is preventing industrial emergencies. The Company does everything it can to this end, from introducing new occupational safety standards to implementing incentives to encourage compliance with OHS rules.

To help raise the employees’ responsibility for OHS compliance, Cardinal Rules that include disciplinary liability up to dismissal for violating OHS rules are in effect at mine offices and TPPs. 

OHS Management Systems and Standards

OHS management systems in line with the global best practices have been introduced and operate at DTEK ENERGY’s facilities. All electricity generation and distribution enterprises received certificates of conformity to OHSAS 18001:2007. The Company’s mining enterprises have OHS management systems conforming to international standards to the fullest extent.

The Company has developed an Occupational Health and Safety Policy. This Policy is the Company’s official declaration of its commitment to the matters of occupational health and safety and serves as the basis for setting objectives and tasks in this area.

To carry out the Policy, DTEK ENERGY’s enterprises have developed and implemented corporate standards and instruments aimed at creating safe working environment and preventing occupational injuries and accidents. This includes occupational safety committees, risk assessment and management using the HAZOP technique, internal investigation of incidents and accidents, internal audits and control of OHS compliance, management of hazardous activities and situations using a continuous improvement system, visualization, incentive programs, training and education as well as many other instruments. 

Occupational Safety Training

An occupational safety training system helps maintain the required level of qualification of employees and their readiness to perform various professional tasks in line with OHS requirements. This system includes a variety of briefings, trainings, educational courses and tests.

Core approaches to OHS training are the following:

  • using visualization tools during training sessions (educational films and slides);
  • giving video briefings;
  • differentiation of employees by their qualification level and specialization;
  • involving all members of personnel in the training process;
  • a multi-level knowledge-testing system.

All of the Company’s mine offices give the personnel video briefings before the shift. PROTEK software is the key tool used to train and test employees. It includes various occupational safety programs covering both statutory and corporate requirements. 36.5 thousand employees completed PROTEK training and knowledge tests in 2016. In addition, personnel of the Company’s mine offices receive off-the-job training in work techniques and corporate OHS standards twice a year. A total of almost 24 thousand members of personnel completed this training in 2016.

TPP personnel can attend training and upgrade their skills at production and training centers. The production and training centers operating at DTEK Skhidenergo, DTEK Dniproenergo and DTEK Zakhidenergo are unrivaled anywhere in Ukraine. These centers use unique educational computer software and simulators, up-to-date equipment and hardware. Employees receive training in occupational safety, fire safety and equipment operation. They can also receive on-the-job training. As a result, members of the personnel acquire vocational skills required for safe and efficient operation and maintenance of power plant equipment. 

Distribution enterprises run systematic training programs and competitions. DTEK Dniprooblenergo uses the Mezherich training base to train its personnel in performing production tasks.

1,003 employees completed training at the personnel training and development center; 365 of them obtained first-aid skills, while another 579 improved their knowledge of occupational safety.

Occupational Safety and Health Incentive Programs for Personnel

A system of financial and non-financial incentives has been operating at the coal and energy enterprises since 2013. A competitive environment helps instill occupational safety culture and promotes the development and implementation of innovative solutions aimed at improving occupational safety.

In 2016 alone, 4,000 employees of the Company’s coal mining enterprises received financial incentives worth UAH 1.7 mln total under the program of incentives for reaching occupational health and safety targets, including 235 persons awarded for identifying unacceptable risks. 1,224 employees received non-financial incentives (commendation letters, letters of recognition, and letters of thanks to the employees’ families).

To increase the level of commitment to OHS matters among the top management of coal mining business blocks, top managers participate in OHS assessment. This approach stimulates directors to pay more attention to occupational safety issues since the efficiency of their performance in this particular field is measured both in terms of quality and quantity.

In order to increase employees’ responsibility for compliance with occupational safety requirements, DTEK ENERGY’s mining and processing enterprises have introduced Cardinal Rules that provide for mandatory dismissal for a failure to comply with them.

The Company produces and distributes special video clips and information leaflets to inform its employees about serious and extraordinary incidents that occurred at the Company’s facilities. Such video clips and leaflets explain the reasons why a tragic incident happened and the lessons that have to be learned to prevent it from happening again.

Distribution enterprises have implemented and are maintaining an Occupation Safety Program. The objective of this program is to change the way of thinking and behavior of all members of the Company’s personnel by combining the leadership and support from senior executives, participation of junior executives and engaging labor force in complying with safety measures to ensure occupational health and safety of the employees.

Natural disaster protection

We conduct regular drills to master the skills and actions to be taken in emergencies:

  • training top management and specialists in civil defence and safety management in training centers;
  • individual in-house training in civil defence;
  • drills of the electrical network emergency response centers, together with the relevant local authorities and natural disaster response centers;
  • drills of the emergency response centers in case of emergencies at radiation and chemically hazardous production facilities;
  • drills in actions to be taken if communities are shelled (sheltering employees in basements and semi-basements).

The companies are developing the following measures to protect production facilities against natural disasters:

  • emergency prevention plans;
  • emergency response and recovery plans;
  • patterns of interaction with the main emergency department for emergency response and recovery;
  • schedules of civil defence and fire safety drills;
  • a program of briefings on civil defence and technogenic safety.