IOW - 2 Piece Coveralls
Updated: Feb 17
We recently met with Kelly Thomas & Susannah Stott (Shell UK) to hear about how Shell have widened their range of coveralls available to ensure all body types are catered for. Kelly is currently leading the review and reorganisation of PPE provision in Shell Aberdeen as part of the 50 50 ops initiative which is led by Susannah.
So, tell me how you identified this issue?
The Shell Aberdeen Balance Network kicked off a review of inclusion offshore as it was felt the current D&I initiatives weren’t reaching our offshore community. In this review focus groups and discussions with females working offshore were held. It was very quickly after hearing the personal experience of ill-fitting PPE we knew this was an issue and making women and men feel uncomfortable. We heard several stories from both male and females of female workers having to take off coveralls in shared toilet facilities, which of course raised hygiene issues. Digging deeper we also saw the need for different sizes of top and bottoms across the male and female work force.
What were the steps involved from the point of recognising the issue to bringing about a resolution?
From speaking to some of our international colleagues in Shell we learned about the use of split coveralls in other locations around the world, including dungarees and coveralls with a zip around the waist. From further online research we discovered these were available but not widely used in the UK. We engaged our PPE supplier, Mo and Co, to helped us to identify some potential split coverall options.
How did this problem get resolved?
Once these options were identified we took the proposal to our HSE team to gain approval to be used in operations. We got instant approval and great support for rolling out the improvement. For the next step we wanted to trial the split coveralls across our operations onshore and offshore, we identified two willing volunteers and completed a risk assessment for each of their facilities. The trial was positive but there are still some improvements to be made on the coveralls to meet all the safety requirements in our operations.
And, what are your next steps to roll this out across all the facilities in Shell?
Firstly, we're completing the risk assessment for all facilities and actioning the lessons learned from the trial. Once these are in place, we plan to advertise their availability to our staff and roll them out to the facility stores.
The main aim is to make our colleagues feel comfortable and safe at work. We hope that through increasing our range of coveralls we are being more inclusive of different body types and are showing care.
Thanks for sharing your story with us!