Simply Golden

Simply Golden

The 2011 NOSHCON conference was a special one for NOSA – it was the 50th anniversary of the event, as well as the celebration of NOSA’s 60th birthday. SHEQ MANAGEMENT was there.

Set in the foothills of the Central Drakensburg Mountains at the Drakensburg World Heritage Site near the Lesotho border, the picturesque Champagne Sports Resort was again chosen as the venue for this year’s NOSHCON. Being the 50th NOSHCON and NOSA’s 60th birthday year, the event was set to be one of the most successful, and festive, NOSHCON conferences to date.

“NOSHCON’s 50th birthday makes it one of the longest standing conferences in South Africa. This is testament to the quality of the conference,” says Duncan Carlisle, chairman of NOSA. “We’ve been delighted by the record attendance this year, and, despite being 50 years old, we are constantly looking for ways to improve the conference and build on an event that is recognised across the globe.”

With 700 delegates and just less than 50 exhibitors made up of the leaders in the South African SHEQ industry, this year’s event was the largest banquet NOSA has ever held and the organisation is also proud that there has been a 75% year-on-year return rate for the last few years.

Evening banquets provided delegates with entertainment they wouldn’t forget.“It is critical for our industry to be exposed to international trends, this platform provides that. Speakers from around the globe bring best practice and international trends to the delegates to allow them to better manage their responsibilities as risk professionals. I’m extremely proud of our 50 years, and I’m confident there will be another 50,” comments NOSA managing director Justin Hobday.

Many of the delegates were representing well known organisations – Tongaat-Hulett, SAB, Eskom, Anglo American Platinum, the Department of Minerals and Resources, FEM, SARS and UNISA all had large delegations – and, again, for many it was not their first time. Some delegates from UNISA, for example, were attending their 25th successive NOSHCON!

There were also many international delegates in attendance, particularly from within Africa’s SADC region, as well as countries spanning China, Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States, Holland, Brazil and Switzerland. Of course, NOSA has for a while been growing internationally and, over the next five years, it plans to focus strongly on its international operations, particularly China and Brazil.

Some of the speakers were from international reach as well, each presenting on topics from within their respective specialties in the SHEQ environment. These covered a broad range of areas relevant to the risk professionals in attendance, providing a holistic knowledge experience.

Day one kicked-off with a keynote address by environmental campaigner, maritime lawyer and endurance swimmer Lewis Gordon Pugh. Moving, filled with wonder, and imparting a sense of the possible, Pugh’s address centred on his 2007 endeavour to swim across the North Pole in an attempt to raise international awareness of the rapidly melting Arctic sea ice. Pugh’s swim in -3°C Arctic water covered a full kilometre, taking him just over 20 minutes to complete. His powerful, inspiring and thought-provoking story set the tone for the rest of the conference.

Unplugged Communications gave the keynote address on the morning of day two. Focussing on behaviour-based safety (BBS), Rick Melville, co-presenter CJ Bierman and their team used their innovative and entertaining “Snakes for Safety” presentation to drive their message home. Melville stated that creative companies are in the business of reigniting interest in tired subjects – HSE and BBS being no exception.

Proud recipients of NOSA five-star and NOSCAR awards, among them many individual, international and first time winners.“The HSE industry is booming and increasingly vibrant in Africa. Health and safety is now taken more seriously due to increasing pressures,” he noted. “Campaigns have to be positive, from the heart.” The Snakes for Safety campaign – where numerous, very real and in some cases highly dangerous serpents are central to the presentation – is certainly one example of such an approach.

The afternoon’s keynote was by international speaker Neal Stone, director of policy research: British Safety Council, who spoke about the use and benefits of near-miss reporting on London’s 2012 Olympic Games construction projects.

Day three brought the event all had been anticipating – the live debate with SHEQ experts. The panel was well chosen, consisting of local and international industry experts Paul Mardon (Trade Union Solidarity), Neal Stone (British Safety Council), Julian Nair (Eskom), Gary Streak (NOSA), Dibuseng Makobe (NOSA), Heath Thorpe (Oraeps (Pty) Ltd) and Sipho Ntwampe (Aveng-Grinaker LTA). The first live SHEQ debate to be held in South Africa, it was entitled “A Question of Safety” and set out to explore the biggest challenges facing SHEQ in South Africa.

All aspects were discussed and debated, ranging from legal frameworks, the present and future situations, changing attitudes among management and all employees, the OSH act, the role of unions, making safety everyday business, and the cost of safety. The debate was truly interactive; as all delegates were given the opportunity to put forward topics they wanted discussed beforehand, and during the debate were able to SMS questions and opinions to the chair for the panel.

Some interestiSpeaking through the heart was just one of the messages from Unplugged Communications’ brilliant and thought-provoking statistics also came out of the debate session. For example, there is a world average of four fatalities per 100 000 workers, while in South Africa, that figure jumps to 19,2/100 000. The situation on South Africa’s roads is as bad, with about five accidents occurring every second, costing the country R52 billion. We are also all well aware that safety is one aspect that management likes to cut costs on, as it is not seen as important enough. But with 88% of all workplace incidents a result of human behaviour, this all makes it clear that South Africa is one of the most dangerous places to work.

Many of the delegates found the live debate to be very stimulating and it could well become a regular fixture, hopefully contributing to the drive for all companies to be proactive and reduce workplace injury and loss.

That afternoon’s (final) keynote address was by David Crockett, manager: safe production implementation and project lead: VALE North Atlantic Base Metals. Based in a small Canadian mining town, Crockett’s interesting case study (which was also his first presentation of his findings) was of a zero-harm journey of a 7 000-employee world-wide mining and metal processing operation.

Over the three days, the keynotes were interspersed with 20 one hour-long concurrent breakaway sessions, each covering different aspects. These allowed delegates to benefit from more intimate and specialised talks. All the speakers were available throughout for delegates to network with and gain more information from.

“I hope each delegate that attended the sessions has something they can take away with them that will make a difference in the work place. Thank you once again to our speakers wThe first live SHEQ debate in South Africa: an innovative way for NOSHCON to help further advance the industry.ho have taken the time to impart their knowledge to our delegates,” said Carlisle at the closing gala dinner.

The dinner – themed Legends – doubled as an award ceremony, where many local and international companies were honoured with NOSA five-star and/or NOSCAR awards. There were also individual awards handed out to many of the delegates.

“The awards and recognition NOSA gives to companies and individuals is an important tradition that we have built on over the last five years,” notes Carlisle. “The awards have ensured that the health and safety departments within organisations have the ability to be recognised for the effort and energy they put in to make the workplace environment safer, healthier and more environmentally friendly,” he continues.

As Carlisle noted when addressing the delegates before the winners were announced, this is becoming an increasingly tough task, as pressures on management to meet proper targets causes them to ask questions pertaining to the relevance of HSE departments. “Can we avoid or outsource the costs? Are the proposed HSE measures affordable, and do HSE results have a positive impact on profits? These questions will not make your jobs any easier, and accordingly makes the achievement of a NOSA five-star or NOSCAR status even more significant.” (For the full winners list, see boxes alongside.)

“According to international statistics, the annual losses resulting from workplace-related disease and injuries in terms of compensation, loss of work days, interruptions to production, retraining and medical expenses amounts to over 4% of the GNP of all countries in the world,” he cautioned, emphasising the importance of HSE. “The cost of occupational injuries and fatalities to our economy in 2000 was R30 billion. Unfortunately, there are no up-to-date statistics, but based on our experience, we expect this to have doubled to at least R60 billion in today’s terms.”

The opening address by environmental campaigner Lewis Gordon Pugh: powerful and inspiring.But, as any NOSHCON attendee will tell you, all about depressing figures and continuous talks this conference is not. “We decided a few years ago that NOSHCON wasn’t only about sharing knowledge, we want to ensure that there is benefit as well after hours; an opportunity for delegates to relax, build friendships, renew friendships and share ideas and experiences,” says Hobday.

Delegates were treated to entertainment from the likes of Dr. Victor and the Rasta Rebels on night one, MC Mark Pilgrim showed off his DJ skills at the cocktail evening on night two, and once all the formalities were over at the gala dinner, everyone let loose to some 50’s rock-n-roll by one of the best period cover bands most had ever seen. The evening functions were very sociable indeed, Hobday’s ideal for everyone to relax, network and build friendships being spurred on by the festive atmosphere.

Delegates took full advantage of the venue and the speakers networked with industry professionals and each other, relaxed and had fun. With everything at this year’s conference tying in with NOSHCON’s 50th anniversary, NOSA certainly pulled out all the stops to make it the biggest and best so far. This year’s event will be a tough act to follow, but, then again, so was last year’s. NOSHCON 2012 has been confirmed for between 11 and 14 September.


The first awards are the winners of the international sector industry category on the NOSA health and safety system (CMB150). NOSCAR trophies were awarded if the NOSCAR criteria were met.           

• Sector C1 – for their safety and health programme:
Karibib Mining & Construction Co. (Namibia) Limited – Langer Heinrich  Uranium
Receiving their first NOSCAR – Green status

• Sector E – for their NOSA safety & health programme:
Eskom Holdings Limited, Tutuka Power Station Standerton

• Sector F – for their safety & health programme:
B & W Instrumentation & Electrical Limited, Alberton
Receiving their first NOSCAR – Green status

• On the NOSA safety and health system in SIC I and receiving their first NOSCAR:
Afrisam South Africa (Pty) Ltd. Mini Bulk Depot Roodepoort

• Sector J – on the NOSA safety and health system:
South African Container Stevedores Cape Town, a Division of Bidfreight Port

The following awards are the winners of the international sector industry category on the NOSA integrated health, safety and environmental system (CMB253). NOSCAR trophies were awarded if the NOSCAR criteria were met.

• NOSA Integrated Five Star System in sector A:
Illovo Sugar Beaumont Farm

• Sector C3 – NOSA Integrated Five Star System for the third year in a row and receiving their first NOSCAR:
Afrisam South Africa (Pty) Ltd Swaziland Plant – Platinum status

• Sector C3 – NOSA Integrated Five Star System CMB261:
Zimasco (PVT) Ltd North and Middle Dyke Division Mutorashanga

• Sector C4 – NOSA Integrated Five Star System:
Zimasco (PVT) Ltd Shurugwi and South Dyke Division

• Sector D3 – NOSA Integrated Five Star system:
Valspar (SA) Corporation (Pty) Ltd

• Sector D4 – winning their first NOSCAR for their NOSA Integrated System:
LH Marthinusen Denver – a division of Savcio (Pty) Ltd – Platinum status

• Sector D5 – on the NOSA Integrated System:
Tongaat Hulett Sugar Ltd Refinery

• Sector D6 – on the NOSA Integrated System:
Tongaat Hulett Sugar Ltd Voermol Feeds          
Receiving their first NOSCAR – Platinum status

• Sector E – NOSA Integrated Five Star System:
Air Products South Africa (Pty) Ltd, Kempton Park         
Receiving their first NOSCAR – Platinum status

• Sector F – NOSA Integrated System:
SGB Cape – Kendal Logistics, a division of Waco Africa (Pty) Ltd
Receiving their first NOSCAR – Platinum status

• Sector I – NOSA Integrated System:
Idwala Sales and Distribution Cape Town          
Receiving their first NOSCAR – Platinum status

• Sector J – NOSA Integrated Five Star System:
Transnet Port Terminals Cape Town Container Sector

• Sector I – NOSA Integrated Five Star System CMB255:
Transnet Freight Rail Container & Automotive Business Bloemfontein

The following awards are the winners of the international sector industry category on the NOSA Integrated and Aligned System (CMB330). NOSCAR trophies were awarded if the NOSCAR criteria were met.

• Sector A:
Iningi Investments 143 (Pty) Ltd and the Van Eeden Projects Trust

• Sector D5:
Tongaat Hulett Sugar LTD Mafambisse

• Sector I:
Timber Logistics Services

The following awards honoured individuals who have contributed to their company’s occupational safety, health and environmental risk management programme’s success.

• The executive responsible for SHE:
Natalie Skeepers – Transnet Freight Rail

• The best site risk manager of the year:
Jay Naidoo – Wetback Contracts (Pty) Ltd

• The best SHE risk professional:
Howard Eldridge – Transwire incorporating Bukubuhle Wire, a division of Savcio Holdings (Pty) Ltd           

• Corporate risk manager of the year:
Mathura Brijlal – NPC Cimpor (Pty) Ltd, Newcastle

• The best environmental manager:
Ian Naidoo – NPC Cimpor (Pty) Ltd, Newcastle           

• The best contracts manager:
Johan Crafford – Karibib Mining & Construction Co. (Namibia) Limited, Langer Heinrich Uranium Mine           

• The best group risk manager:
Cliff Timlin – Exxaro Namakwa Sands

• The best loss control officer of the year:
Clive Williams – Sasko Grain Durban Mill           

• Executive of the year:
Julian Nair – Eskom Holdings Limited, Hendrina Power Station

• Occupational health nursing practitioner:
Tshidi Mabe – Eskom Holdings Limited Generation Division, Lethabo Power Station           

• Occupational medical practitioner of the year:
Jakes Mudly – Tongaat Hulett Sugar Maidstone Mill

• The winning risk controller:
Stephan du Toit – the South African Breweries Limited, Hartswater Depot

• Risk manager of the year:
Clinton Houston-McMillan – Masonite (Africa) Limited Forestry Division           

• Safety & security manager:
Arveen Rambhuron – Servest Security, Darnall Mill           

• SHE controller of the year:
Pinky Lebitso – Amalgamated Beverage Industries, a Soft Drink Division of the South African Breweries Limited, Welkom Depot           

• SHE excellence selected by the MD of NOSA:
Lizelle Swanepoel – The South African Breweries Limited, Rustenburg Depot

• SHE representative of the year:
Kogie Govender – The South African Breweries Limited, Ladysmith Depot           

• SHE risk manager:
Trevor Good – Idwala Sales and Distribution Durban           

• SHE risk manager – mining:
Marius Vlok – Exxaro Namakwa Sands           

• SHE specialist/facilitator coordinator – mining:
Jacques Krynauw – Karibib Mining & Construction Co. (Namibia) Limited, Langer Heinrich Uranium Mine           

• SHEQ risk manager of the year:
Craig Patrick – Tongaat Hulett Sugar Voermol Feeds           

• Receiving their first NOSCAR at NOSHCON:
Gujarat Paguthan Energy Corporation PVT. Ltd           

• AMS16000 AIDS trophy for 2010:
Royal Swazi Sugar Corporation

The following are the three Top 100 awards. This award is presented to the top three winners who during 2010 excelled in occupational safety, health and environmental risk management.

• Mining:
Exxaro Namakwa Sands

• Commercial:
Air Products South Africa (Pty) Ltd, Head Office

• Industry group for manufacturing:

Published by

SHEQ Management

SHEQ MANAGEMENT is the definitive source for reliable, accurate and pertinent information to guarantee environmental health and safety in the workplace.
Innovation, quality and integrity with ICAS
Prev Innovation, quality and integrity with ICAS
Next The curse that is cancer