Safety at CERN

Safety is an integral part of our working lives, and should be in our minds whatever job we do at CERN. Ultimately, safety is the responsibility of the Director General – your safety is my concern. That’s why I have this week appointed a new Safety Policy Committee (SAPOCO) that reflects the new Organizational structure of CERN.

CERN’s Staff Rules and Regulations clearly lay out in chapter 3 the scope of safety at CERN as well as my responsibilities and yours in safety matters. At CERN, safety is considered in the broadest sense, encompassing occupational Health and Safety, environmental protection, and the safety of equipment and installations. It is my responsibility to put appropriate measures in place to ensure that these conditions are met. And it is the responsibility of us all to ensure that we are fully conversant with safety provisions applicable in our areas of work and that we comply with them.

The appointment of a new SAPOCO makes it timely for me to remind you of our individual and collective responsibilities, and to encourage you to show the same level of commitment to safety as you do to your work. In particular, I ask you to be mindful of your training in matters of safety. Safety training is an essential part of the work process for all of us, and cannot be postponed until time is available. As a newcomer to CERN, I have made time available in my agenda to follow all the safety courses necessary for my job. It is essential that you do the same.

Our responsibility also involves adopting safe behaviour at all times, particularly when working on installations where hazards have been identified. Making sure that you always make use of appropriate personal protective equipment shows your commitment to safety. Being vigilant to potential risk at all times, and acting appropriately on information that indicates a safety hazard, is also your responsibility.

Finally I would like to remind you that if you are in doubt about any aspect of safety, if you have a question, or if you need information about safety, you should ask your supervisor. Supervisors are responsible for your Safety and, through the hierarchical line, they ultimately answer to me in all matters of Safety at CERN.

I am committed to maintaining CERN’s reputation as a place of excellence, a place of innovation, and a place where safety is of the highest priority. I firmly believe that our success can only be built on a strong safety culture providing a safe and secure environment for all, whether they be staff, users, contractors or visitors.

Rolf Heuer