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December 08, 2021

Stay Focused

Being in Port Hope this past year, seeing the salmon run and the leaves change, as well as having the privilege of enjoying my first Canadian Thanksgiving was truly an experience. Now, we are in the holiday season with several events being held in person, like the recent Santa Claus parade. With pandemic rules loosening, and people spending more time together with loved ones again and participating in these holiday activities, it is easy to allow distractions to affect safety. Here at Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, our values include practicing safety both on and off the job, so I urge each of you to take care of yourself and those around you during these busy times. We have a “Target Zero” philosophy here regarding health and safety events, lost-time incidents for workers and impacts on public safety. These can apply to our regular day-to-day life with so many distractions and interruptions competing for our attention, maintaining our focus is essential. Once focus has been lost on the job at hand, it can take 20 minutes or more to regain it. This results in us being less productive, but more important, it can lead to injury.

  • When I need to recalibrate my attention, I remind myself of some safety fundamentals that have always served me well:
  • Work together! Be willing to offer support and share ideas, and recognize when you need to ask for help.
  • Plan ahead and plan safe.  If there’s no plan, or it’s not safe, don’t do it!
  • Declutter your space; keep areas tidy and organized
  • Remember what is truly important – whether it be a family member, your health or a personal goal – in whatever you do, do it safely

I am reminded that the word “focus” may be small, but the meaning is HUGE when it comes to safety.

Stay focused and stay safe!

Mark Hughey



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