SAFETY PERSPECTIVES

Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

Esteban is the Director of Safety Solutions at Select International. He manages the development and implementation of all safety solutions and services, which address some of the critical challenges faced by organizations today in workplace safety.
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Recent Posts

How Emotional Control Affects Your Response to Fatigue

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

How would you describe your mood when you don’t get enough sleep? Let’s say you only slept three hours because you were up late with sick kids, working on a report for work, or simply binge watching your favorite show.  How cheerful or positive would you feel the next morning? My bet is that you might not be very fun to work with on that particular morning!


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Fatigue and Injury – Some People are More at Risk than Others

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

Did you know that in the U.S., about 70% of employees report being tired at work?1  While fatigue on the job is getting increasing attention as a safety concern, the results of a 2017 National Safety Council (NSC) survey revealed that the problem is much bigger than most people realize.  Even more alarmingly, the survey also found that 50% of employers reported finding employees asleep on the job.2


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4 Leader Behaviors that Kill Your Incident Reporting Culture

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

How satisfied are you with your organization’s incident reporting?  Do employees truly feel that they can report all injuries and incidents without repercussions?  Many organizations I work with are putting a lot of time and effort into creating a strong incident reporting culture, but when senior leaders at these companies don’t see the increase in reporting activity that they expect, they often wonder why employees won’t speak up and report injuries.  What they fail to realize is that often, the problem lies at the leadership level.


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4 Psychological Factors that Impact Driver Safety

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

In 2017, more than 40,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes according to the National Safety Council, with the three biggest causes of fatalities on the road being alcohol, speeding, and distracted driving. And, as an employer, you play a big role in keeping roads safe. Millions of employees drive as part of their jobs. Some are professionally trained drivers, but many are not, and if a job does not primarily involve driving, the employee often does not receive the same driver safety management that professional drivers do.


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Falls at Work Cause 2 Deaths a Day: 4 Ways to Influence Change

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

FACT: Every DAY, two people die in the United States as a result of a fall at work. Yes, that’s right – two deaths per day, according to the National Safety Council.

As you probably know, June is National Safety Month and this week, the National Safety Council’s focus is on Fall Prevention.  It may be surprising to you that in the year 2018 we still have that many fall-related fatalities on the job.  Sadly, we still have a long way to go when it comes to preventing deaths and serious injuries due to falls.  Here are some other sobering facts:


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4 Factors That Can Make Your Emergency Preparedness Plan More Effective

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

A workplace emergency is a situation that threatens workers, customers, or the public; disrupts or shuts down operations; or causes physical or environmental damage. Emergencies may be natural or man-made, and may include hurricanes, floods, wildfires, winter weather, chemical spills, explosions, and many other hazards. Many types of emergencies can be anticipated in the planning process, which can help employers and workers plan for other unpredictable situations.

June is National Safety Month, and week one focuses on Emergency Preparedness. In the workplace, a variety of hazards can occur as a result of natural disasters and emergencies. For those working in the impacted area, it is vital to be prepared for an emergency by ensuring that employers and workers have the necessary supplies, know where to go, and know how to keep themselves safe when an emergency occurs. A solid emergency preparedness plan allows for more seamless communication and execution which can reduce serious injuries and fatalities.


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3 SafetyDNA Factors That Can Make or Break Your Stop Work Authority Program

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

Please answer the following question as honestly as possible.

On a scale of 1 (Very Unlikely) to 6 (Very Likely) what is the likelihood that the average employee in your workplace would stop a job if they deemed it to be unsafe?

Does your company have an official Stop Work Authority policy that allows any worker to stop a job if they feel it is unsafe?  If so, what was your answer to the question above?  If your rating was 3 or lower, don’t feel bad.  Many organizations today still struggle with implementing an effective and robust Stop Work Authority (SWA) process that truly empowers individuals to exercise this authority and stop a job when they feel that they or co-workers are at risk of injury.  I work with a lot of global organizations that have very low incident rates and seemingly strong safety cultures, but when we talk to employees about their SWA, it becomes apparent that not everyone is truly comfortable stopping the work.


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3 Ways to Make Your Safety Stand-Down More Powerful

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

Fatalities caused by falls from elevation continue to be a leading cause of death for construction employees, accounting for 370 of the 991 construction fatalities recorded in 2016, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. These workplace injuries and deaths are preventable. In honor of OSHA's National Safety Stand-Down to prevent falls in the construction industry this week, we'd like to support these efforts by suggesting three ways to reinforce your stand-down efforts. By understanding your psychological characteristics and tendencies, you are more easily able to maintain a safe workplace and make the most out of this campaign.


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Improve Driver Safety by Understanding What Puts You at Risk

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

If you own or lease a vehicle, I want you to take a moment to think about the last time you drove your car.  Maybe it was just a few hours ago.  You probably took a few moments during the drive to change the station on your stereo, adjust the temperature, or maybe to look at your navigation device.  Each one of those small, everyday driving habits was a distracted driving moment during which you were significantly more at risk of being involved in an automobile accident.  In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines distracted driving as “any activity that diverts attention from driving, including talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, talking to people in your vehicle, fiddling with the stereo, entertainment or navigation system—anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving.”  So anytime you are doing any of these activities, you become a distracted driver. 


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3 Ways Safety Leaders Succeed in Fostering a Safe Workplace

Posted by  Esteban Tristan, Ph.D.

Many organizations and safety leaders expend significant time and money putting together safety programs and training to foster a safer culture. Unfortunately, these programs often fail, resulting in significant injuries, inefficiencies, and costs to the organization. One of the reasons for these failures is that these traditional approaches cannot account for an important factor – the unique psychological differences between individuals when it comes to safety.


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