APM Terminals Apapa, Nigeria’s largest container terminal, has set a new safety record at the port, as it recorded 400 days no Lost Time Injury (LTI).
No Lost Time Injury (LTI), which is a key indicator of the effectiveness of an organisation’s safety programme, means no injury was sustained on the job by an employee or contractor that resulted in the person being away from work due to his or her injury.
Igor Van Den Essen, regional managing director, Africa and Europe at APM Terminals stated this recently at an event to mark the company’s 2022 Global Safety Day in Lagos, with the theme ‘We Learn And We Adapt’.
Essen who was on a visit to Nigeria, commended the Apapa team for the major safety milestone, charged them to sustain and improve on the record.
He said, “As we discuss safety while we observe Global Safety Day, we continuously highlight how deeply it impacts our operations and our entire company. Being in an asset-heavy industry and due to the nature of our operations, we consider safety to be non-negotiable to us, our people and our partners across the port logistics ecosystem and it is also one of the three pillars of our strategy “Safer, Bigger, Better”.
Klaus Laursen, country managing director of APM Terminals Nigeria while commending the employees, said, “We are here to remind ourselves about the importance of maintaining safety every day. We need to look at a few things. The first step to becoming better is to realise that you have an opportunity to be better. So, you have to be humble. We have to come to the consciousness that we can be better in small and bigger steps.
“So, when we come to work, if we want to maintain 400 days and more of no LTI, it is important that we, apart from what we do today, can do it better. One of the things that we do as an organisation to foster this is when we try to apply our newly learned knowledge. Learning is for all of us. It gives us an opportunity to say I think this could be better, I think I can help make this better. And we can all be part of making a small and bigger improvement that makes this place a safe place to work.”
on his part, Steen Knudsen, terminal manager, APM Terminals Apapa, encouraged employees to celebrate themselves as they had achieved a huge milestone of going through a whole year without any injury recorded. He urged employees to always remain safety conscious.
He said, “All of us here should inculcate the practice of coming forward to report incidents to ensure a more robust safety. I want you to also know that safety is not only for today; safety is tomorrow, next tomorrow, next week, and so forth.
“Today is about safety and we know the theme, ‘we learn and we adapt’. When I try to reflect on learning and adapting, I want to talk a little bit about the transformation journey that we have been on in the last couple of years. We have the ambition to change how we fundamentally do things in APM Terminals.
“We want to be more efficient; we want to give our customers a better experience, we want to deliver more to the Nigerian economy, and we want to do this while ensuring that everyone goes home safe after work. In achieving this, learning from the past is critical. We have a lot to learn from happenings in the past. The first stage in any improvement is to realise where you are coming from and improve from there.”
Knudsen added that over the past 16 years since it commenced operations, APM Terminals Apapa had made a substantial investment not only in equipment and facility upgrade but also in continuous training and manpower development.
“We are not only looking at functional skills – I mean skills that enable us to do our jobs more efficiently and faster, we also look at how we develop our supervisory levels, managerial levels, and front line levels in order to ensure that we grow the company to where we want it positioned for the future,” he said.
A major high point of the event was the presentation of Certificates of Recognition to employees with outstanding safety records. The event was attended by several stakeholders including the representatives of the Nigerian Ports Authority, Nigeria Customs Service, Nigerian Police Force, Hapag Lloyd, Pacific International Lines and Maersk, among others.