Dr. Chuck Pettinger, Ph.D.

  • Dr. Chuck Pettinger, Ph.D. , Safety Management Expert

    Learn more about Dr. Pettinger’s presentation scheduled for the Assembly of Manitoba Safety Professionals 2015
    Read Dr. Pettinger’s biography

    The Four Safety Truths

    “Predicting & Preventing: Using Big Data to Eliminate Death on the Job”

    Many world-class companies have significantly reduced their recordable rates over the last decade (BLS, 2013), but are still plagued by infrequent but severe injuries and/or fatalities. Thus, many organizations continue searching for true leading indicators to help predict when and where these severe injuries or fatality will occur. If true safety leading indicators could be identified, then the precursors for serious injuries and fatalities could be identified and acted upon. For many companies, these indicators are essential for moving safety cultures from great to world-class. Much leading indicator data is gathered from inspections/audits/observations; however, organizations often struggle with quality. This talk will help participants identify leading indicators and precursors to serious injuries and fatalities. Through a case study and ongoing statistical research on over 160 million observations, participants will discover how using their leading indicators and predictive analytics could help predict, prevent and eliminate death on the job.

    Safety Analytics – The Business Intelligence of Life

    If you look at any recent business newspapers, magazines or websites, you will most likely find a reference to “Big Data,” “Predictive Analytics” or Business Intelligence.” As a matter of fact, there has been a 1211% increase in searches focusing on big data within that last few years (Frank, March 2012). Predictive analytics is the study and use of large data sets to predict or forecast. Many people have experienced the power of predictive analytics if they have ever used a Google search, had an item recommended by Amazon based on previous purchases or has ever bought insurance. Predictive analytics have made it into popular movie such as Moneyball and into bestselling books like Silver’s The Signal and the Noise. Silver’s book outlines the many uses of data in our world today. His view is that it is not a matter of gaining enough information; it’s a matter of finding the signal within all the noise. Business intelligence and predictive analytics will be a part of everyone’s jobs, if it is not already. And there is no other area in businesses that could benefit more from using “Safety Analytics,” than our safety departments.

    The safety field collects a surplus of data from safety observations to near-misses. Unfortunately, this critical safety intelligence is often not used, misused or just plain ignored. With the increasing computing power now accessible to organizations, it is possible to perform complex analytics that could not have been done a few years ago. Furthermore, there are many programs on the market that make it easy for the individual to retrieve that critical information they need in real time. Our challenge is to use safety analytics to help us uncover the signal within the noise to get us ahead of the incidents and injuries.

    Having an inspection and observation process can, by themselves, increase safety awareness and impact the organization’s safety culture (Tuncel, Lotlikar, Salem, & Daraiseh, 2006). But while these methodologies are an essential part of a dynamic proactive safety culture, they do not guarantee world-class safety performance. In fact, some practitioners question the validity and effectiveness of the intelligence collected from their inspections/observations (Guastello, 1993).

    Next Generation Safety Metrics: Lead Your Industry by Using Leading Indicators

    By considering inspection and observation information as leading indicators, organizations can now move beyond lagging indicators to measure the safety and health of an organization. Only recently has technology evolved to the point where we can start to review leading indicators in real time, providing safety professionals with a new perspective and suite of tools from which to work.

    Lagging indicators are the loss metrics that are already captured and recorded today by many organizations. These are your incidents, recordable incident rates, lost-time accidents, etc. In one sense, lagging indicators measure an organization’s safety consequences in the form of past incident statistics. On the other hand, leading indicators are the precursors that may “lead” to property damage, risky behavior or incidents.

    Some examples of leading indicators relative to inspection and observations include at-risk conditions per inspection, rate of closing open issues or items, and the severity of an at-risk condition or behavior. These leading metrics can be used today to measure the “holes” in an organization’s safety defenses and better allocate scarce resources. Furthermore, conditions and behaviors observed tend to be proxies for organizational discipline and cultural evolution, and thus represent good leading metrics of the overall health of your safety culture.

    Participants will leave the presentation with three critical methodologies to help eliminate injury and fatalites on their jobsites: 1) participants will learn how they can use leading indicators to identify precursors to serious injury and fatalities, 2) they will also gain insight on how to use predictive analytics on the valuable intelligence gained from their inspection/observation data, and 3) they will leave the talk with a case study on how leading indicators and “big data” were used to predict where injuries were going to occur.

    Dr. Chuck Pettinger, speaker at the Assembly of Manitoba Safety Professionals day, 2015About Chuck

    Chuck Pettinger, Ph.D. has more than 20 years of experience designing, implementing and evaluating safety improvement initiatives. His major interests include developing large-scale corporate change initiatives, assessing industrial safety cultures and customizing Safety Leadership Summits.

    Chuck has consulted with a wide variety of industries including Bechtel, BD Biosciences, Bayer, BF Goodrich, Caterpillar, Chevron, Coca-Cola, Cummins, Duracell, ExxonMobil, Honeywell, Kiewit, Kaiser Permanente, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Monsanto, National Grid, Nestles, Peabody, Pfizer, Salt River Project, Southern Company, Turner, Union Pacific and Xcel Energy.

    Chuck earned his Bachelor degree from the University of Florida, his Masters from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and his Doctorate from Virginia Tech under Dr. E. Scott Geller. Before joining Predictive Solutions, Chuck was a Senior Project Manager with Safety Performance Solutions (SPS) and a Grant Project Manager with Virginia Tech’s CABS, a research and development organization led by Dr. E. Scott Geller. Chuck is also a Certified Behavior Analyst and has served as a Behavioral Program Specialist for the State of Florida and other private industries.

    Chuck also has played a prominent role in writing and conducting research grants. He has managed projects, worth more than 2.5 million dollars, funded by the Alcoholic Beverage Medical Research Foundation, Centers for Disease Control, Department of Motor Vehicles, National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health (NIOSH), Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the National Collegiate Athletic Association and the U.S. Department of Energy.

    Chuck has authored many training/technical manuals while designing, customizing and developing training materials for use in industry and government agencies. In addition, he has numerous published abstracts and papers and many scheduled speaking engagements at professional conferences yearly, including invited international multi-day workshops in Africa, Australia, China, France, Hong Kong, India and Singapore.

    Areas of Expertise

    • Designing, implementing, and evaluating safety management improvement initiatives
    • Developing large-scale general and safety culture change initiatives
    • Coaching leadership in the creation of a continuous improvement safety culture
    • Applying next generation performance metrics through general and safety leading indicators

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