Safety Management System

Corporate Responsibility

Safety Management System

Canadian Natural's Safety Management System (SMS) is a key framework used to help achieve Safety Excellence throughout our operations. Our SMS provides a framework comprised of 15 industry recognized elements used to meet or exceed standards for basic safety programs.

Canadian Natural conducts its business in accordance to the principles found within our Corporate Statements, and our SMS is aligned with the Corporate Statement on Health and Safety. Our integrated Safety, Health and Environmental Management System (SHEMS) in our Canadian Natural Resources International (CNRI) operations is based on the same principles, structured to meet local regulatory requirements and fulfill our environmental and safety performance goals.

Integrated management systems

Canadian Natural believes safe workers and safe operations help deliver steady, reliable production. We manage personal safety and process safety differently, but we link them together in terms of awareness and potential impact to the worker. We also focus on the integrity of our assets to address the risks associated with our various operations in a complete manner. To ensure safe and reliable operations, we have integrated management systems for:

  • Personal Safety (safety of all workers);
  • Asset Integrity (safety, compliance and reliability of our pipelines, pressure equipment, tanks and infrastructure); and
  • Process Safety (Process Safety Management (PSM) is a systematic approach to preventing hydrocarbon releases, that not only protects workers but also the public, the environment and our operations).

Together, these departments focus on:

  • Developing a culture where safety is frontline-driven.
  • Creating safety advocates or champions within all divisions of our operations – empowering every individual to be aware and contribute to their own safety.
  • Following a proactive approach to risk mitigation.
  • Developing a culture of learning.
  • Constructing value-added communication and reporting.
  • Encouraging feedback.
  • Cultivating sustainable/consistent processes and systems.

Our Safety and Asset Integrity teams work together with all our operational divisions to implement and effectively execute our Safety and Asset Integrity Management Systems.

Building on strong safety systems

SMS alignment is important for our management systems to be effective and efficient. To generate corporate consistency in our approach across all operations, safety teams have developed, and continue to enhance, an integrated North American SMS that represents our wide range of operations. The North American SMS allows employees to use proven and established safety methods to conduct their work, with similar procedures for investigating incidents, performing inspections and structuring safety meetings across all business units.

The integrated SMS retains key elements of the previous systems necessary for safeguarding employees of a major oil sands mining and upgrading operation and diverse conventional/thermal operations. To do this, safety teams worked together with Operations personnel and incorporated the expertise of the frontline employees who use the SMS on a daily basis.

The strengths of the SMS, leadership engagement and a series of valuable safety tools, have reduced incidents and contributed to the best safety performance in our Oil Sands Mining and Upgrading operations to date. During 2017, we also focused on the integration of the AOSP mines into the North American SMS. Read more about Integrating Management Systems.

SMS Audits and Recognition

Canadian Natural’s Safety teams conduct internal SMS audits to raise awareness and set expectations by reinforcing our frontline-driven safety culture, while helping supervisors demonstrate ‘Safety as a Core Value’. Audits are completed in all our field operations, offshore installations and corporate offices. They allow for feedback and constructive collaboration, as action plans are generated within each operating area for continued improvement.

This internal process also supports the annual external Certificate of Recognition (COR) maintenance audit in Canada. The COR is awarded by Alberta Occupational Health & Safety (OHS) to employers who develop a health and safety management system that meets provincial standards. Our North American operations maintain the COR program and the Partnerships in Injury Reduction (PIR) status. The PIR is a voluntary program that encourages injury prevention and effective workplace health, safety and return-to-work programs. It operates through the joint efforts of the Alberta Workers’ Compensation Board, government, OHS, industry partners, safety associations, employers and labour groups.

In our UK operations, internal SHEMS audits are regularly carried out to ensure the effectiveness of our integrated management systems.