TODAYSZAMAN.COM – Over two-thirds of workers dissatisfied with workplace safety measures

Over two-thirds of workers dissatisfied with workplace safety measuresEyes turned to the issue of workplace safety in Turkey after a recent mine blast in the district of Soma that killed 301 workers, but 77 percent of workers are still not satisfied with their workplace safety measures according to a poll conducted by Eleman.net, a Turkish human resources website.

According to the results of the poll, in which 7,360 company representatives and 8,920 workers took part, 57 percent of workers who participated have experienced or witnessed at least one accident in their workplaces.The data also reveal that 85 percent of company representatives say they have conducted a risk analysis in their firms.

The percentage of firms employing a workplace safety expert was only 24 percent, and 13 percent of firm representatives said they have not developed a strategy for work safety, according to the poll.“The poll results showed that work safety measures are not at the sufficient standard and this issue is not taken seriously in Turkey, as 57 percent of workers have either experienced or witnessed a work accident,” said zlem Demirci Duyarlar, Eleman.

com general manager, in a written statement on Wednesday.Duyarlar also stressed that as the Soma disaster has shown, providing adequate equipment is crucial in preventing and minimizing the damage caused by workplace accidents.

Miners who survived the Soma tragedy stated that the company running the mine had failed to take adequate safety precautions and the government had been negligent in properly inspecting the mine, citing these as the main causes of the recent disaster that claimed the lives of 301 miners.“When we entered the mine, the gas sensors weren’t working,” a worker from Imbat AI, another mining company in the town of Soma, who took part in rescue efforts right after the disaster, told Today’s Zaman on May 13.

“When I asked the miners who worked in the mine why the sensors were not working, they said they had been turned off as they slowed down production,” he added.Another miner, who works for Soma Kmur IIletmeleri AI (Soma Mining Company) in Manisa province, said the official inspections carried out in the mine were not adequate at all, maintaining that the inspectors only examined the main shafts of the mine and not the side corridors.

“We would be told a week beforehand that an inspection was going to be conducted. Within that week, everything in the mine was put in order,” he added.

A lack of proper gas masks also played a major role in the disaster The Imbat AI worker who took part in the rescue operation maintained, based on what he had seen in the mine during the rescue effort, that the masks the miners used did not appear to have been checked regularly. “Colleagues who took part in the rescue operation saw, when they reached the bodies, that many of the victims’ gas masks had not been activated.

The cords — which should be checked every 15 days — that make the masks function automatically turned out to have been torn off,” the miner said.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman

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