Why and How to Use Safety Pat
Safety Pat is a tool to visually manage safety incidents and accidents. Visual management is one of the foundational principles of operational excellence and continuous improvement. Safety Pat is one way to see visually the problems you are having with incidents and accidents. Many of us in manufacturing have at least heard of safety pat, but by the end of this blog you should understand why and how to use safety pat.
1. Safety pat (photo below, email us for a higher quality version)
2. Red and yellow markers
5 Steps on How to Use Safety Pat
Step 1: Decide where “Safety Pat” is going to live. You may have a large (life-sized) version in a common area or incorporate the above into your balanced scorecard support metrics. You may even have both!
Step 2: Establish a standard for what and how safety pat is to be marked. This example shows “First Aid” to be marked in yellow, and “Recordable” incidents to be marked in red. You need to standardize how to use safety pat so that there isn’t any confusion when interpreting or updating the chart.
Step 3: When a safety incident / accident happens (after it’s been contained and you are reporting out on the problem), record the incident on Safety Pat, using either the yellow or red marker, depending on the issue.
Step 4: Record the date next to the injury number.
Step 5: Be sure to do problem solving after each safety issue, the graph above is just a way to see where your most frequent problems are occurring!
Safety Pat and the Balanced Scorecard:
KCOE recommends that Safety Pat “live” in the support row under the safety column on the balanced scorecard. There is room for 25 incidents/accidents so hopefully safety pat will last you more than one or two iterations of your monthly balanced scorecard meeting.
The next Step for how to use Safety Pat:
Remember, Safety Pat utilizes visual management, which is one of the foundational elements of the operational excellence system. For best results on how to use Safety Pat, make sure you have the proper Plan-Do-Check-Act cycles around visualizations.