Academic journal article Asian Social Science

Relationship of Psychosocial Safety Climate and Workplace Psychosocial Risks: A Randomized Trail among Personnel of an Oil and Gas Company in Iran

Academic journal article Asian Social Science

Relationship of Psychosocial Safety Climate and Workplace Psychosocial Risks: A Randomized Trail among Personnel of an Oil and Gas Company in Iran

Article excerpt

Abstract

Oil and gas industry is a main revenue generation for Iran, and thousands of employees are involved in various oil and gas fields. From numerous health hazards which commonly occur in the industry one of them is psychosocial hazards. Studies confirmed a crucial step to control and understanding workplace psychosocial risk factors is developing and monitoring of policies, rules, and plans to promote health at work. This research conducted in an Iranian oil and gas company in Tehran in the period of 2011 and 2012. 248 participants were randomly selected and assigned in the study. Two questionnaires HSE and SCAT used in order to assess workplace psychosocial risks and attitude of personnel to safety climate. The result of HSE scores revealed relationships and role sub-scales in psychosocial risks were in abysmal situation. Personnel's attitude to safety climate at the organization displayed communication, priority of safety, and involvement were at the level of "dissatisfied". Also there was a medium positive correlation between work environment and managers' support, relationships and change p<0.01. These findings show that safety climate factors namely communication, work environment, supportive environment, inversely affects workplace psychosocial risks. Overall, the outcomes supported the possibility that personnel attitudes to safety climate at company were predictive of higher psychosocial risks. Progress in safety climate and the psychosocial aspects of safety climate may diminish the experience psychosocial risks. Development of policies and procedures with aim of reduce psychosocial risks should be considered in Iran.

Keywords: safety climate, psychosocial risk, oil and gas industry, HSE tool, SCAT tool

1. Introduction

Since 1920 oil and gas industry has become the main revenue generation for Iran (Mohamedi, 2011). National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) reported thousands of employees are involved in various oil and gas fields (NIOC, 2012).

One of the high-risk occupations in terms of health, safety, and environment is working in the field of oil and gas industry. Numerous hazards which commonly occur in the industry involve chemicals (toxic, sensitising substances), physical concerns (noise, vibration), biological effects (food poisoning), ergonomic activities (manual handling methods), and psychosocial impacts (work overload, long working hours, work relationships) (Gardner, 2003). Psychosocial risks factors are "elements that impact employees' psychological responses to work and work conditions, potentially causing psychological health problems" (Samra, Gilbert, Shain, & Bilsker, 2009).

There are three different workplace situations in the oil and gas industry, including oil fields, laboratories, and offices, which expose employees to different health risks. Research findings show addressing and dealing with psychosocial risks is a challenge for managers and occupational health and safety inspectors (Productivity Commission, 2010) (Johnstone, Quinlan, & McNamara, 2010). Studies found an essential step to control and understanding workplace psychosocial risk factors is developing and monitoring of policies, rules, and plans to promote health at work (Dollard, Skinner, Tuckey, & Bailey, 2007).

Research related to workplace psychosocial conditions in developing countries are not solid and organized (Kortum, Leka, & Cox, 2010). Identifying the magnitude of correlation between psychosocial risk factors, would provide stakeholders, government, management, health and safety professionals, and health personnel, an opportunity to address psychosocial risks appropriately and effectively.

Attitudes and perceptions of employees to the workplace makes safety climate (Carayon, 2007), and Psychosocial safety climate is policies, rules and procedures to protect worker from psychological health and safety problems in the organization (Dollard & Bakker, 2010). …

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