Anyone keen to get a fresh perspective on their approach to health and safety should call in at the CXCS stand (4C12).
This year will mark the first visit to the CVS for the Herefordshire-based firm who, having been advising the agricultural sector for decades, are now also supporting other industries.
“The commercial vehicle sector has much in common with agriculture,” says CXCS Managing Director Karen Powell. “There are a lot of small- and medium-sized businesses, and they are often family-run operations. In both industries, safety is quite rightly a critical issue.
“Commercial operators and drivers take safety very seriously, but it’s an ongoing task to keep procedures and training in place and updated. There’s no escaping the fact that it can be a dangerous job.”
Staying as safe as possible - on public roads and in the workplace - is often about making improvements, rather than necessarily aspiring to a state of 'perfection', according to Karen. “There are some risks you can never totally eliminate, but you can still reduce them. We work with businesses on inexpensive steps that make them safer.
“It's about embedding best practice and being practical, by recommending easy-to-implement measures.
“Sometimes, just a little planning ahead and thinking through a task can avoid an accident, but such logic can all too easily go out the window if the pressure is on and there are deadlines to meet.”
The first step is often to look objectively at a business’s current practices through a risk assessment, explains Karen. This means identifing hazards, then assessing the likelihood of each one happening, along with its potential severity. “This helps us decide the priorities.
“We’ve been trying to spread the message in agriculture that safety shouldn’t be seen as something that’s time-consuming, expensive and bureaucratic. Rather, it’s the steps we take every day to protect ourselves, our families, our teams and our businesses from preventable harm. It’s a means to come home safely from work at the end of the day.
“Sometimes, people think ‘it won’t happen to me’, but an injury or fatality is devastating enough, without the knowledge that the loss could have been avoided – which is the heartbreaking reality of some accidents.
“We’d like to play our part, alongside great work by other organisations, improving the safety record of the commercial vehicle sector. At CXCS, we really are motivated by a desire to make a difference. Someone once said to me this is a job where you might save someone’s life and never even know it.”