On 28 April 2022, Port of HaminaKotka Ltd arranged an occupational safety seminar for companies and other organisations operating at the port. The seminar presented the views of various parties on the hazards of work in the port environment and ways to overcome these hazards.
Suvi-Tuuli Lappalainen, Development Manager of Port of HaminaKotka Ltd, started the event by presenting the current types of co-operation with the various parties at the port. In his presentation, Ville Kuitunen, Director, Traffic Operations, discussed the general security situation and wanted to encourage companies to be prepared for potential attempts to influence them through information.
Steveco Oy’s Safety Manager Arto Kauppila described the dangers involved in the work of stevedores. Slippery winter conditions, blind spots and working beside water, among other things, bring their own hazards to stevedores’ work. Arto Kauppila said that Steveco has introduced life-saving rules, which are implemented among the personnel using different methods and channels. Employees are encouraged to make safety observations and also to highlight positive safety observations.
According to Pasi Hannula, VR Transpoint’s Railroad and Safety Specialist, issues such as snow, ice and wind cause hazards in the work in the winter, for example. Moreover, snow loads, piles of containers and other obstacles can impair visibility, and the stopping distances can be hundreds of meters. Level crossings are also significant hazards that burden the employees.
Foreman Petri Piirainen from Lassila & Tikanoja presented the safety observations made along the route of a waste truck. When moving in the port area, occasional poor visibility, for example from behind containers, together with the movement of straddle carriers and other work machines, bring their own dangers to the work of a waste truck driver. These dangers are managed by providing information about the identified dangers, and by co-operation between the various parties.
Sami Saarinen, District Manager of Finnpilot Pilotage Oy, said that the dangers involved in a pilot’s work include a potential collision of the pilot boat with the ship, failure of the pilot ladder and the pilot falling between the ship and the boat. Pilotage in itself can also cause danger to other parties in the port environment. As an example, a misinterpretation made by a pilot can cause a ship to collide with a quay and other infrastructure, such as cranes. Means to minimise these risks include the use of a tug and the safe placement of cranes.
Logistics Director Sirpa Saarinen presented NEOT’s versatile occupational safety efforts, which include safety advisers (TNAs), job observation, risk assessments, action plans as well as training, which is in key focus at NEOT. In her presentation, Sirpa Saarinen emphasised the importance of proactive safety.
During the breaks of the event, the participants were able to get acquainted with the virtual safety park of the University of Applied Sciences of South-East Finland. At the end of the actual seminar, member enterprises were selected for the new term 2022–2025 of the co-operation group in occupational safety at the port. The rewarding and interesting day was finalised by a tour led by Vesa-Jukka Vornanen, Technical Director of the City of Kotka, at Port Logistics Safety Park Kuuri at Kantasatama Harbour.