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Chen, Q, Jin, R and Soboyejo, A (2013) Understanding a Contractor’s Regional Variations in Safety Performance. Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, 139(06), 641–53.

  • Type: Journal Article
  • Keywords: Construction industry; Contractors; Occupational health; Safety; Regional analysis; Safety performance; Regional difference; Incident rate; Behavioral violation; Safety climate; Safety culture;
  • ISBN/ISSN: 0733-9364
  • URL: https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)CO.1943-7862.0000602
  • Abstract:
    Contractors’ safety performance can vary widely in the construction industry. However, it has not been well recognized that variations in safety performance could exist in the same contractor’s regional offices. There is also a lack of understanding of the differences between regions and what causes these variations. This paper analyzes the safety performance of a general contractor’s six major regional branches across four states after implementation of a new safety management program. The research finds apparent differences in regional incident rates (IRs) and safety violation rates (SVRs), although the shared perceptions from workers and site management personnel about how the safety program is implemented (i.e., safety climate and culture) are generally consistent companywide. This research also discloses that regional IRs, SVRs, safety climate, and culture are uncorrelated in the long term (during the 17-month study period), but have some linear relationships over a short duration (during the 4-month survey period). The correlation analysis in this study does not find a significant influence of workers’ demographic characteristics and a few other potential influencing factors on regional safety performance. These findings will provide useful insights to industry practitioners who aim to achieve good, consistent safety management and performance across regions.