Saturday, March 30, 2019

Can Legalistic mechanisms be effectively used to promote organizational safety

Can Legalistic mechanisms be efficaciously used to promote organisational synthetic rubberCan hail-orderedistic mechanisms such as in integratedd obligation be violenceively used to promote organizational safeguard? Use two precise fibers to illustrate your argument.In the earned run come of globalisation and battle of business for expansion to foreign markets, braggy organisations in a form of healthy entities (i.e. companys) is seem to be taking the supreme role over the worlds economy. The growing size of corporations, their complexity and control of abundant resources provides ground for misconduct that often results in unbecoming effects to both(prenominal)(prenominal) individuals and the community. Great numbers of possibilitys that resulted in a large scale constipations caused to union in the past decades has brought the obligation of merged misbehaviour and the steering they extend bumps to legion(predicate) debates both in professional and lay p ublic.The idea of attempting to dole out organisational risks is recognized as a relatively new apprehension (Institute of womb-to-tomb eruditeness, 2006 5-6) and the complexity of complaisant inter mouldions of individuals that constitute organisations adjacent to fast development of advanced(a) technologies in contemporary society may prove for identification of dubious circumstances that affect safety deep down organisations, extremely ch altogetherenging. As observed by the Institute of Lifelong Learning (2006 5-6) there be slightly acknowledged professional and academic courses in Britain, but since the counselling of organisational risks is non a mature activity, it does non possess the same level of legitimacy that round other institutionalised concepts do.It appears that wakeless reforms in Europe and whatsoever other countries intend to begin it easier to impose legal sanctions on corporations for expert wrongdoings. iodine might send word that such r eforms are logical issuing of or so mayor harms fetchd by corporations that were later unsuccessfully prosecuted under alert laws and deemed insufficient to protect the public interests. In the United Kingdom (UK) some large scale calamitys such as the s extend crash at Paddington, the inflame at Kings Cross underground property, the capsizing of the ferry prefigure of Free Enterprise are few that were catalysts for reforms making it easier to impose unrelenting liability on corporations for physical injuries or deaths. The adoption of unified Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide flirt 2007 might be perceived as an authorised power of these reforms.This paper impart examine a frequently controversial aspects of the record to which risk focussing regimes should be more or slight condemn orientated ( bonnet et al., 1996 46) and, whether, in the event of an avoidable accident, the company as salutary as (or perhaps rather than) determine individuals might or sho uld be held morally or legally trustworthy for an act or scorn (Institute of Lifelong Learning 2006, 4-22).The probe apparent movement opens a much discussed view of corporate liability which this paper allow discuss in the mise en scene of organisational aspects of health and safety as an integral part of managing risks in organisations. The leaven will besides discuss legislative aspects that are regulating corporate accountability. However, the intention of the author is non to summarize the arguments on legislation primer in detail. It needs to be recognized that legislation that regulates corporate responsibility varies worldwide. Therefore, the paper will discuss some of the broader aspects that might affect health and safety compliance in organisations.Finally this taste will throughout the discourse provide an argument that rigorous financial and legal liability posed on corporate bodies usher out signifi give the gatetly contribute to a better organisational safety. This will be achieved by using two specific aspects for discussion in order to support the argument. The case studies used in the discussion are the brush aside at Kings Cross underground station in capital of the United Kingdom, UK in 1987 and the chivvy of the cable car in Kaprun, Austria in 2000.Definitions of conditionsFor further discussion the key terms from the essay question needs to be defined. Bergman, (2000 20) in his critical perspectives on corporate responsibility in UK uses the term company and corporate in the context of companies distinguish up with a view to profit that have been registered under the Companies Act 1985. In the same explanation, he further also considers a circumscribe of those companies that befalls under variety of other legal provisions, including a number of organisations in public sector. Despite some important distinctions can be made, this essay considers the term of corporation, company and organisation in the same context, wi th potential to produce a certain kind of harm.According to online dictionary a corporation is a large company or group of companies authorized to act as a single entity and recognized as such in law and liability is the state of being legally responsible for something (Ask Oxford, 2010). In order to merge the terms, this paper will use the definition on corporate liability of another internet source, namely Wise character (2010), which defines corporate liability as an assessment of the activities that a corporation may be held legally liable for in a court of law.The prevalent point to be made here is that in principle a corporation can be held legally liable as a single entity for corporate activities (acts or omissions) that is breaching the law through the group or an individual it employs. Such breaches of law might have severe adverse effects on society, resulting in harm to health and safety of either the people or environment, where health is regarded more in the contex t of wellbeing of people.For further discussion the definition of the term safety is interpreted from a dictionary. Shorter Oxford (1973 quoted in Institute of Lifelong Learning, 2006 4-11) regards safety as The state of being safe exemption from hurt or trauma freedom from endangerment the quality of being un analogously to cause hurt or injury freedom from dangerousness safeness. In order to merge the terms health and safety in the context of organisational structures and their legal responsibilities, the example is taken from an explanation provided by the Institute of Lifelong Learning (2006 4-7), which argues that the term is not but active enforcement of legislation related to protection of employees. The argument goes It is much more of a generic concept, which has developed the status of an ethos, which is demonstrated by the use of the term Safety Culture for the attitude of an organisation towards risk-taking. iodin might already observe that targeting the essay quest ion in the context of efficientness of corporate liability towards organisational safety in an affirmative manner might be considerably narrow. It becomes visible that managing safety in organisational framework requires further scrutiny in a broader context of Risk, Crisis and Disaster management, if complementary progress on safety through imposed strict liability measures on corporations desires to be achieved. However, earlier the discussion on specific case studies, the term safety culture requires additional attention, since it was illustrated that it might play an important role in attitudes towards risk taking in an organisational context.Explanations of the term safety culture flourish. A very concise one was given by the CBI (1990) as the way we do things around here. Pidgeon et al. (1991 249) define safety culture as those sets of norms, rules, roles, beliefs, attitudes and social and technical practices within an organisation which are disturbed with minimising the ex posure of individuals to conditions considered to be dangerous. As such defines individuals attitude and beliefs near organisations, their perceptions of risks and the importance, practicality and effectiveness of controls regarding organisational safety.The case studiesThe case studies used in this paper are both disastrous events caused by the sudden occurrence of fire which resulted in fatal outcome to numerous involved. The first, fire at Kings Cross underground station in capital of the United Kingdom in 1987 cl obtained the lives of 31 people and injure many more. The fire followed a number of less serious hazardous fire incidents on the London tubing. The formalised subject area concluded the immediate cause of the fire as a failure to clean and lubricate the running tracks of the escalator where the fire took out after the match fell (Department of Transport, 1988 quoted in Bergman, 2000 24).Kletz (2001 116) argued that approximately 20 fires per year between 1958 and 1967 were called smoulderings to make them seem less serious. Similarly, the November 1988 Public query report observes the London hugger-mugger managements re feat to earlier escalator fires from 1956 to 1988 as imperfect, describing the managements approach as reactive rather than proactive (Department of Transport, 1988 quoted in Bergman, 2000 24). In particular, the report summed up in the evidence of the then Director common of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, that many recommendations after previous fireshad not been adequately considered by elderly managers and there was no way to chink that they were circulated, considered and acted upon. Londons Underground failure to carry through the proposals resulting from earlier fires such as the provision of automatic sprinklers, the need to ensure all fire equipment was powerful positioned and serviceable, identification of alternative means of escape and the need to train faculty to react properly and posi tively in emergencies was a failure which I believe contributed to the hazard at Kings Cross.(Department of Transport, 1988 in Bergman, 2000 25)Despite the fact that the report recognized collective failure for disaster from the level of most ripened managers downwards over many years to minimise the risk of fire outbreaks, the sound blame was placed mainly to senior management of the company. The official report into the disaster claims the responsibility of management brasss as playing a significant role in development of precipitating causes that triggered the disaster (Fennell, 1989 in Institute of Lifelong Learning, 2006 3-5). However, was the applicability of be legal instruments effective becoming to reach the corporate decision makers and to what extent? Apparently, at the time of the accident there were sufficient instruments in place to find the London Underground legally liable for a roughshod act of manslaughter or for a lesser offence under the Health and Safety at relieve oneself Act 1974 (Bergman, 2000 29). Regardless sustainable grounds provided for legal punishment, the London Underground and its senior managers gained immunity from any form of criminal accountability (Bergman 2000 29).It is beyond the scope of this paper to examine further in details all the failures that led to disaster and the debates that followed in the aftermath. Though, the failures summed above can already nail that organisational safety culture was poorly maintained. The November 1988 Public Inquiry report specifically verbalise that the London Undergrounds understanding of statutory responsibilities for health and safety at work was mistaken and that many of the shortcomings which led to the disaster had been determine in earlier investigations and in reports by the fire brigade, the police and the Railway upraise Prevention and Fire Standards Committee (Department of Transport, 1988 in Bergman, 2000 24-25). This exemplifies that the London Underground ma nagement was made aware of non-compliance with safety standards. Even though a accounting of small fire outbreaks was excessive, the London Underground failed to consider reported hazards bad and to introduce safe guards to minimise the risk of a fire with a potential for large scale loss of life.Such a mop up stands much in favour of those who argue that effective risk management depends on the designing of inducement structures that place strict financial and legal liability onto those who are in the better position to take action to minimize the risk ( toughie Jones, 1996 46). The claim is thatif liability is not precisely targeted on specific and appropriate decision-makers, a poorly designed institutional incentive structure will allow avoidable accidents to occur. Without close targeting of liability, there will be too little incentive for care to be taken by those decision-makers in organizations who are capable of creating hazards, and (the argument goes) risk extern alization will be encouraged. Policies should, therefore, aim to support expanded corporate legal liability, more precisely targeted insurance premium practices, and regulative policies that have the effect of criminalizing particular management practices and of laying sanctions directly on key decision- makers within corporations, rather than trusting corporations as undifferentiated legal persons.(cf. Fisse Braithwaite, 1988 in Hood Jones, 1996 46)Was the looseness of regulatory and legal instruments in men of the safety investigators that did not make it possible to enforce the London Underground to remove the identified hazards and that led to the disaster, this paper was not able to fully determine. However, it is of believe that strict liability imposed on those who represent a guiding foreland and will of the company for non-compliance with safety regulations, would be effective to prevent an avoidable accident to occur. An absence of criminal charges against the senior company managers might to some extent support a positive answer on the essay question with Bergmans argument in criticising the authorities of their failure to prosecute directors. He suggested that it is often argued that only when proper action is taken against directors-with a satisfying threat of imprisonment-will other companies take notice (Bergman, 2000 90). Though, some wider perspectives of corporate liability in relation to organisational safety need to be further discussed in advance any conclusions drawn. This brings the discussion to the next case study, where all the regulations were complied and yet the disaster occurred.The flash example that this essay considers is the fire of a funicular train in a tunnel that happened near Kaprun, Austria in November 2000. The fire on a Gletscherbahnen Kapruns funicular railway, carrying 167 people up to the Kitzsteinhorn glacier claimed lives of 152 passengers on board, the device driver of the second train in the tunnel and t wo people near the top portal of the tunnel. In total 155 people lost their lives, injured not tallied (the total number of people involved in the incident varies throughout different articles. Figures presented in this paper are matching the volume of them). The 12 survivors who managed to escape out of the train through smashed windows were those who fled downward-sloping away from the smoke. Others who fled uphill were overcome by smoke and fume. Those survived witnessed that smoke was emanating from the rears driver cabin forrader the train entered the 3.5 kilometres long and 3.6 meters wide tunnel with an average incline of 45 degrees. The immediate cause of the fire was a porous tube of hydraulic oil that came into contact with a glowing sess at the rear cabin, nearby wooden panels and isolation materials. After the heater caught fire, the hydraulic line exploded and the oil was sprayed into the flames. This was stated as the campaign why flames spread so quickly. The o fficial results of the investigations confirmed belief of the experts that fire was caused by an electric heating ventilator, which was illegally installed into the drivers cabin ( transportation system conjunctive research Program, 2006 26-28 Beard Carvel, 2005 6 Faure Hartlief, 2006 31).Although the train driver reported the blaze to his bum station, the train continued and stopped 600 meters into the tunnel. Following, as the Transit conjunct look into Program (2006) suggests thatthe fire continued and the steep tunnel acted like a giant chimney, sucking air in from the bottom and sending poisonous smoke billowing upwards. Despite an alarm signal and contact with the institute station instructing the driver to open the admittances, the train stayed at the location with its door sealed. Later investigation revealed that this was the immediate cause of death of most of the passengers.(Transit Cooperative Research Program, 2006 27)Some observed that the accident has parall els with the Kings Cross fire. As Transit Cooperative Research Program (2006 28) suggests that the Kings Cross escalator shaft at the centre of the fire had a 30 degree incline that, like the Kaprun fire created a chimney effect. The Kaprun blaze moved faster because of the sharp incline. Though, contradictory the Kings Cross disaster, where some(prenominal) small fires were excessively observed before the accident, in the Kaprun case a regular inspection of an independent elegant technicians performed two months before the first day of skiing season and also the day of the accident, has found no safety breaches or non-compliances with safety regulations. However, does that make the existing safe guards to prevent the accident sufficient and, nonetheless, the Gletscherbahnen Kaprun any less culpable for the disaster?As Tyler (2000) put forward there was no sprinkler system to put out the flames in the tunnel, fireproof emergency refuges or an evacuation tunnel through which the passengers might have escaped. The BBC News (2004) stated that the blaze was worsened by the fact that the tunnel was not lit, had only one narrow service stairway and the doors of the train could not be opened by the trapped passengers from the inside. Another author (Beier, Unknown 3) in his paper claims that there were no emergency exits, lights or a manner to pull the burning train out of the tunnel. Similarly the Transit Cooperative Research Program (2006 28) stated that the train did not have comme il faut fire extinguishers and that an evacuation drill never took place.The listed above illustrates that significant safety measures were ignored downwards many years of operating the Gletscherbahnen Kapruns funicular train. In recognition of that, sixteen people including company officials, technicians and government inspectors were arrested and charged with criminal negligence. The centre of the prosecution was to claim liability for those responsible for installing and work a non-regulation heater in the drivers cabin, which sparked the blaze by leaking oil. However, on February 19, 2004, Austrian court acquitted all sixteen with explanation of the judge in Salzburg that there was insufficient evidence to find the 16 train operators, suppliers and inspectors responsible for the blaze (BBC News, 2004). The appellate court in Linz in 2005 confirmed the finding of fact of the Salzburg court with the decision that no criminal acts were demonstrated despite the open failure to take care. The defendants had complied with the regulations (Beier, Unknown, 3). Many affected announced that they would continue with courtly proceedings. Though, these cases are still pending.The main problem was that designers of the electric heater complied with the existing regulations. However, the regulations failed to distinguish required standards for different types of trains. The design of the heater installed was inappropriate for a train in a tunnel and obviously di fferent hazards were not foreseen. As Beier (Unknown, 4) argues A horrible risk caused entirely by the design and construction of the technical system had slipped through the entire legal and regulatory system because everyone focused on the compliance with the regulation not whether the system was safe. As he suggested in the paper, no one thought about a fire nor did regulators ask anyone to think about it (Beier, Unknown 3).One of the conclusions drawn by Beier (Unknown 4) on Kapruns accident is that even major companies will do only the exact minimum to comply with regulations and that compliance with regulations does not guarantee a safe outcome. It is important that, he as many argues that simple product can create extremely complex risk systems and assuming that risks in technologically advanced -complex systems can be effectively managed by regulations they might prove as inefficient as in the case of Kaprun disaster. However, short before the accident in Kaprun took place, there were several occurrences of disastrous events that befell the road and rail tunnel users in the Alps and elsewhere (BBC News, 2000). Therefore, it should not be neglected that the Gletscherbahnen Kaprun managers together with the authorities inherently failed in the management of organizational risks by, as Toft and Reynolds (1994 quoted in Institute of Lifelong Learning 2006 5-10) suggest, not taking advantage of the lessons learned by others.ConclusionThe case studies revealed serious recklessness of the companies in their regard to safety, which unfortunately in both cases resulted in disastrous events with great losses of lives, many injured and large numbers of grievous families that lost their loved. Despite the fact that great harm was caused to society, neither companies nor their managers were prosecuted or found guilty in front of court for any kind of criminal behaviour. Though, it needs to be recognised that the concept of criminal corporate liability is only one perspective in a broader context of responsibility claimed in case of corporate wrongdoing.In the case of Kings Cross fire it is suggested that strict liability imposed on senior managers could stipulate the companys proactive respond in dealing with identified hazards that later led to disaster. In the case of Kaprun fire the possibilities for cross-organisational isomorphism to cover charge the gap of being unaware of the consequences that could happen and actually did happen, were obviously missed. In both cases this paper suggest that the companies regarded safety with gross negligence, with the main aim to do only exact minimum to comply with safety standards and regulations. Bergman argues thatunlike the minds of individuals, which cannot be re-modelled, the components of a company can be analysed and reformed. New policies can be adopted, new job positions created and new management systems set up. The organisational defects of a company itspsyche can be taken into pieces and put together. Unsafe companies can be turned into safe ones.(Bergman, 2000 99)Both companies operated in an inherently vulnerable manner before the accidents occurred and responded with significant safety improvements only after the disasters. One might argue that such safety improvements were not out of plenitude in terms of available resources on both sides already before the accidents. With strict financial and legal liability incentives, avoidable accidents might be prevented. Bergman (2000 90) argues that there is a great need to increase the accountability of directors and senior company officers the backbone of any system of deterrence in preventing corporate harm, moldiness be action against those in control of the company.There are many that are sceptical of such an argument and consider it as possibly ineffective or even counterproductive. Such opponents can point to some other policy areas where criminalization leads to the adoption of artificial legal devices to li mit liability, rather than to real changes in behaviour (The Royal Society, 1992 157-158). Fitzgerald (1986 quoted in Hood Jones, 1996 62) claims that person should not be punished for occurrences over which they could not performance no controlif such targeting is to be implemented, then it must be accurate.Indeed, safety concerns should not be placed in the hands of management only. It should be overall responsibility of all aspects within organisational structures. However, it should be vested at the highest level of each organization (Bergmann 2000 126). Wells (quoted in Hood Jones, 1996 60) suggest, if safety managers want to make themselves weatherproof, their barometers need to be tuned as much to the pressure of social constructions of accidents as to the legal categories into which they potentially be placed. The managers should exercise whatever is reasonably possible to prevent avoidable accidents to occur. Therefore, incentive structures that place legal liability on those corporate bodies that are in the best position to take action to minimize risks can be an effective mechanism to promote organisational safety. Regular safety audits or inspections could present an important instrument not only to penalize non-compliances of safety regulations, but to key out hazardous circumstances that could develop into any mayor accidents. Gray and Scholz suggest thatInspections imposing penalties result in improved safety because they focus managerial attention on risks that may otherwise have been overlooked. It is not the little penalty that makes OSHA inspections effective in reducing injuries, but rather the concern of managers to prevent the costs associated with accidents once they are aware of the risks.(Scholz, 1997 256)

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