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Health and Safety

Customer satisfaction cannot be accomplished without employee satisfaction. The Kubota Group promotes the creation of comfortable and motivated workplaces where its employees can not only work safely and securely but also feel pride and joy in their work.
In accordance with the Kubota Group Charter for Action & Code of Conduct, which is our global standard for conduct, we carry out audits and interviews at overseas bases with a clear understanding of the circumstances of each country and region, in order to raise the level of employee-related policies across the entire Group.

Promoting a Safer Workplace

Kubota formulated its Basic Policies on Safety and Health in April 2013 for the purpose of creating a safer and more secure workplace. Based on these policies, Kubota is enforcing the ethic whereby all people involved in the business, including contractor employees, behave based on the philosophy that “Safety is Our First Priority.”
In addition, three specific instructions to ensure the “Safety is Our First Priority” philosophy were announced by the President.
The Kubota Group’s Mid-term Plan (FY2018 to FY2022) has put forth a variety of strategies to achieve a goal of zero Class-A incidents,* with initiatives promoting inherently safe equipment; promoting safe operations; enhancing personnel development to support safety; and maintaining and improving a safe and healthy working environment as its pillars.

  • Class-A incident is one that can lead to a serious incident, such as crushing or entanglement in machinery, due to one of the following causes:
    1) contact with a high-heat object, etc., 2) contact with a heavy load, etc., 3) entrapment and entanglement by machines, 4) fall from heights, 5) contact and the like with forklift / vehicle, 6) falling from or contact with agricultural/construction machinery, 7) electric shock, 8) hit by a flying / falling object, 9) acute poisoning by harmful substances, or 10) fires or explosions
The Kubota Group Basic Policies on Safety and Health

“In the Kubota Group, no work should be carried out
without serious consideration of safety and health.”

To achieve this, we established the fundamental principle that all the people involved in the business shall behave based on the philosophy that “Safety is Our First Priority.”

Safety is Our First Priority

All the people involved in the business of the Kubota Group shall observe the determined rules and behave based on the philosophy “Safety is Our First Priority,” to protect themselves from accidents.
Management executives shall operate the business keeping in mind the philosophy “Safety is Our First Priority,” respect and listen to the voices of frontline worksites, and be reminded that “the worksite is a mirror that reflects yourself.”
Management-level employees shall identify any risk that may lead to a serious incident and take faithful action to address such risk, while endeavoring to create a corporate culture that allows straightforward talk about safety and to develop human resources that support safety.

Kubota Group’s Mid-term Plan (FY2018 to FY2022) Target and Major Tasks

Kubota sets a target for the period up to FY2022 as the final year, and will mainly address the tasks below.

Target: Zero Class-A incidents

[Major tasks]

  1. Promoting inherently safe equipment
    1. Apply the risk assessment for machine safety to all new equipment.
    2. Complete measures for existing equipment to achieve the target levels determined in the Safety Control Guidelines for assessment and promotion of inherently safe equipment.
    3. Work to prevent the recurrence of equipment abnormality.
  2. Promoting safe operations
    1. Based on the revised Risk Assessment Guidelines for Work Operations, examine actual operations with reference to the Class-A Incident Prevention Checklist accompanying the risk assessment to eliminate any areas of unidentified risk linked to such incidents.
  3. Enhancing personnel development to support safety (the Kubota Group Safety-Aware Employee Development)
    1. Promote activities to enable all employees to follow the “basic daily cycle” described in the Basic Guidelines for Safety-Aware Employees as a habit.
  4. Maintaining and improving a safe and healthy working environment
    1. Accumulate improvement examples at model dusty workplaces before deployment to other offices and workplaces.

Kubota Group Guidelines for Safety-Aware Employees/
Basic Guidelines for Safety-Aware Employees

  • Basic Guidelines for Safety-Aware Employees

Initiatives Implemented for Priority Issues of FY2019

In FY2019, the initiatives below were implemented with regard to priority issues.

  1. Achievement of Level II for existing equipment and Level III for new equipment (6 domestic Group companies and 16 overseas Group companies)
    Based on a newly formulated 5-year implementation plan, we are progressing with activities to upgrade to Level II all existing equipment still below that level under the Safety Control Guidelines for assessment and promotion of inherently safe equipment, which categorizes equipment into degrees of safety from Level I to IV. For new equipment, our policy is to ensure safety Level III at the time of its introduction, based on the risk assessment for machine safety that was revised in FY2017.
  2. Initiative to prevent recurrence of equipment abnormalities (all domestic Group companies)
    When an abnormality arises in a piece of equipment, we work to prevent its recurrence through a process of ‘visualization.’ We are also engaged in activities intended to eradicate incidents that result from not stopping equipment when abnormalities occur.
  3. Promotion of risk assessments of work operation activities (all domestic Group companies)
    We have revised our risk assessment for work operations with the aims of enhancing the ability to identify risk at worksite and plant departments and promoting measures against residual risk. Through training using the risk assessment, we are working to eliminate any areas of unidentified risk linked to Class-A incidents.
    We also hold guidance seminars where employees can receive instruction from external consultants who observe the actual work on our manufacturing floors so that we can improve our risk identification capabilities linked to Class-A incidents.
  4. Initiatives to instill the Basic Guidelines for Safety-Aware Employees (all domestic Group companies)
    We undertake educational activities via the serial publication of messages from the management in our company newsletters, so that it will become a habit for all of our employees to always abide by the Basic Guidelines for Safety-Aware Employees, and that habituation will help achieve our organizational culture.
  5. Education on how to teach safe operations (all domestic Group companies)
    As part of our rank-based education initiatives, we have established a defined way of how to teach safe operations that clearly describes specific approaches to work-related teaching and methods for confirming and assessing degrees of proficiency. With this, workers can receive easy-to-understand guidance regarding the work they are in charge of, allowing them to perform their work more safely once they learn methods to avoid risks and the rationale behind why they need to abide by those methods.
  6. Maintaining and improving a safe and healthy working environment (all domestic Group companies)
    We carry out measurements twice a year at all worksites to continuously monitor conditions at a detailed level. By actively promoting horizontal rollout of example of good practice, we work to maintain and improve standards Group-wide.

The Kubota Group Safety and Health Target for FY2020

Kubota has clearly set the target below for FY2020, and is promoting Company-wide efforts to create safe workplaces.

Target: Zero Class-A incidents

[Priority implementation issues]

Plant departments
  1. Promoting inherently safe equipment
  2. Promoting safe operations
  3. Developing Safety-Aware Employees
  4. Promoting sanitary management
  5. Operating the Kubota Group health and safety management system
  6. Taking action for Group manufacturing companies outside Japan
Construction departments
  1. Developing Safety-Aware Employees
  2. Promoting safe operations
  3. Promoting inherently safe equipment
  4. Promoting sanitary management
  5. Promoting environmental management

Raising Awareness of Safety

We provide safety education through messages issued by management and through a range of conferences.

  1. Education through management messages
    Messages from management (executive officers) around the themes of the Kubota Group Approach to Safety and Safety-Aware Employees* were distributed via the company newsletter and the company Intranet to promote safety awareness throughout the organization.
  2. Education through conferences
    For plant departments in Japan, we organized a Staff Conference in September for staff assigned to safety and health duties and a Section Manager Conference in November for section managers with safety and health responsibilities.
    The aim of the Staff Conference was to eliminate any areas of unidentified risk linked to Class-A incidents in the workplace, while the section manager conference was held to review initiatives for the fulfillment of the Mid-term Plan and to set policy for the next fiscal year. Meanwhile, a Construction Safety and Health Manager Conference was held in April and in November for managerial staff in construction departments. The aims were to set up a system for application to department-wide construction projects which will identify risks before works start and draft associated risk reduction proposals, and to enhance the abilities of project directors who form the operational frontline.
    In overseas regions, Safety and Health/Environmental Manager Conferences were organized jointly with the Environmental Protection Department for Group companies in the Asia region in September and in the Europe region in December.
    The conferences were held with the aim of cultivating the ability of participants to identify issues at their own business bases and worksites using on-site patrols and to draft related improvement measures.
    In the North America region, an August conference has been held since 2019 under an initiative by local Group companies with the aim of adopting examples of good practice from the activities and management of other participating worksites.
  3. On-site guidance meetings with an outside consultant
    In September and December, on-site guidance meetings to enhance the ability to identify risks linked to Class-A incidents were held with Noboru Furusawa, a leading safety expert and representative of the organization Supporting Safety and Developing Human Resources. The meetings were attended by section managers, assigned staff, supervisors and other relevant employees in the areas of safety, health and manufacturing, mainly from plant departments in Japan.
    To learn how to look for danger and how to carry out inspections, the participants received on-site guidance in how to carry out risk assessment at the operational frontline. This included how to spot risks linked to Class-A incidents and how to motivate and educate through communication in the workplace.
  • Asia region Safety and Health/Environmental Manager Conference
    (September 3-4, 2019)

  • On-site guidance meetings with Noboru Furusawa (photograph far right)
    were held to enhance the ability to identify risks linked to Class-A incidents
    (September 25 and December 19, 2019)

Lost Time Incident Rate/Severity Injury Rate

  • Lost Time Incident Rate (Kubota Corporation)

  • Severity Injury Rate (Kubota Corporation)

Safety and Health Education Implementation Status in FY2019

Safety and health education is provided for each rank, including for new employees (education at the time of employment).

Manufacturing Departments
Name of education program No. of times held Total participants
Education for new employees 5 355
Elementary (for young employees) 6 165
Semi-intermediate
(for mid-career employees)
3 75
Intermediate (for workplace leaders) 2 50
Training for newly appointed lead persons 3 55
Training for newly appointed supervisors 4 70
Training for newly appointed foremen 1 10
Other than Manufacturing Departments
Name of education program No. of times held Total participants
Education for new employees 2 170
Safety and health education for midcareer entrants at the time of employment 12 110
Equipment safety education 11 95
Training for newly promoted managers 1 130
Training for newly appointed section managers 4 65
Training for newly appointed department managers 1 20
Education for officers (Safety, Environment, and Quality Forum) 1 30
  • Figures for the total number of participants are rounded to the nearest five, except in the case of “education for officers.”

Sites with Occupational Health and Safety Management System Certification (OHSAS 18001)

To ensure safety for employees and provide them with a workplace environment that allows them to feel safe concentrating on their duties, Kubota has acquired OHSAS 18001/ISO 45001 certifications for its business sites below, while establishing an occupational health and safety management system focusing mainly on risk assessment for other sites.

In Japan
Tsukuba Plant OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Dec. 2000
Keiyo Plant ISO 45001 certification acquired in Nov. 2018 (OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Dec. 2002)
Ichikawa Plant ISO 45001 certification acquired in Nov. 2018 (OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Dec. 2002)
Hanshin Plant
(Mukogawa)
OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Nov. 2003
Hanshin Plant
(Amagasaki)
OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Apr. 2005
Hirakata Plant ISO 45001 certification acquired in Apr. 2019 (OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Jun. 2007)
Overseas
Kubota Materials Canada Corporation OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Aug. 2012
SIAM KUBOTA Corporation Co., Ltd. ISO 45001 certification acquired in Sep. 2019 (OHSAS 18001 certification acquired
in Jan.-Feb. 2014)
Kubota Baumaschinen GmbH ISO 45001 certification acquired in Jun. 2019 (OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Jul. 2014)
SIAM KUBOTA Metal Technology Co., Ltd. ISO 45001 certification acquired in Nov. 2019 (OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Dec. 2014)
KUBOTA Engine (Thailand) Co., Ltd. ISO 45001 certification acquired in Jul. 2019 (OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Jul. 2015)
Kubota Farm Machinery Europe S.A.S OHSAS 18001 certification acquired in Feb. 2017
KUBOTA SANLIAN PUMP (ANHUI) CO., LTD. ISO 45001 certification acquired in Jun. 2019
Kubota Construction Machinery (Wuxi) Co., Ltd. ISO 45001 certification acquired in Nov. 2019
Kubota Engine (WUXI) Co., Ltd. ISO 45001 certification acquired in Nov. 2019

Initiatives to Reduce Risk for Employees Working Overseas

With the collaboration of specialist international medical treatment and security companies, the Kubota Group is working to reduce risk for employees posted overseas and their accompanying family members and for employees on business trips overseas.
By collecting and analyzing security information at the overseas location, we provide information to Group employees in Japan and overseas. To deal with medical needs, we have rolled out a system operating round the clock every day of the year that provides services including consultation with a doctor by telephone from overseas and arrangement of emergency medical transport.