Safety Audit Programs

Written by Shirley Parker
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Safety Audit Programs are designed to strengthen a safety program by identifying any weaknesses, such as areas where the program hasn't been fully implemented or insufficient training of employees. Like financial audits, they may be conducted internally or by state, government, or industry officials. Certain international safety audit programs are also recognized, such as that authorized by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

The pharmaceutical companies conduct corporate environmental, health, and safety audits of all facilities where their products are manufactured. In addition, outside auditors help improve the auditing program. These groups include the Environmental Auditing Roundtable (EAR) and the ENSR's International Audit Protocol Consortium (IAPC). Other private and/or regulated industries conduct similar safety audit programs.

The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) conducts different types of audits. The audits, held every three years, examine a number of areas with the goal of improving safety for employees and citizens who use public transportation, whether from choice or necessity. Targeted transportation systems include a Rail Safety Audit Program, a Commuter Rail Safety Management Program, and a Bus Safety Management Program. Evaluations from independent auditors, who are known nationally and internationally, help to optimize safety practices and in the process, show the industry's ability to police itself.

Safety Audit Programs and Crime Prevention

While not all communities conduct safety audits, where they are held, local residents have a great deal to say about feeling safe or not feeling safe in their own neighborhood, even in their own homes. They are not shy about pointing out the parks and shopping malls that they hate having to go to, even in the daytime, because of the drug dealers, and the human waste and other trash left lying around. Their demands for street lighting are often vociferous, in spite of being met with tales of woe about inadequate budgets. They are sick of gang members taking over the streets, the bus stops, and the local cash and carry stores. They want police officers to get the many cowardly bullies off the streets and into jail or rehab programs.

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