HSE Excellence.
The single most important aim we have.

Protecting people, safeguarding places.

Profit, speed, convenience, competitive edge - in today’s market, there are many pressures on a terminal facility.

However at VTTI, safety is non-negotiable. Nothing is allowed to take priority over the well-being of our people or the environments in which we work. To this end we have an HSE Policy, with a clear and uniform set of standards that apply to all of our terminal facilities worldwide.

HSE Policy

Achieving zero accidents & incidents is not a goal, but a way of thinking

VTTI firmly commits to providing all stakeholders with a sound and effective operational framework focusing on safety and occupational health, environmental protection, sustainability, reliability and quality.

Our way of operating is defined by the VTTI Way and the Core Qualities:

  • Our Dynamic Strategy for HSE is based on positivity: presenting solutions rather than vetoes, and encouragement and learning rather than blame, all to ensure safety for all
  • Our people consider their own safety and that of their colleagues as well as protecting our environment as their highest priority
  • In HSE we need individuals that dare to leave their comfort zone, invest in assessing possible risks and making well considered decisions in order to reduce these to the minimum in thorough risk evaluation to keep their colleagues safe and productive
  • We continuously share best practices and lessons learned to keep our people and our environments safe. We bring a fresh pair of eyes and help improving the performance of the terminals (and our people)
  • As VTTI employees, we are owners of our own safety and well-being as well as of that of everyone around us. We embrace our Life Saving Rules, in spirit as well as in the letter, actively promoting excellent HSE performance and a sustainable way of operating
  • We ensure we minimize our impact on the environment and conduct our operations as sustainable and efficient as possible
All Accidents are the same
They could have been avoided.

A constant drive for improvement

Pursuing improvement in HSE is a journey without an end. No terminal can ever be ‘too safe’, and nor can our operations tread too lightly.

For this reason, every operational and environmental action we take is governed by VTTI’s Integrated HSE Management Manual. This sets out the standards we must work to, and the activities we have designed to realise our goal of continuous improvement.

Margit Blok, Director HSE
Margit Blok, Director HSE

“We not only operate in heavy industry, we also store and move hazardous product. So our approach to safety is quite simple: it overrides any other consideration. Full stop.”

At every site, activities include:

Operational Auditing (Process Safety Audits)

We believe that every terminal should be reviewed by a fresh pair of eyes - and that those eyes should come from other terminals within our group. That way, we can combine total inside knowledge of our process safety (which external assessors may not have) with the fresh observations and thinking of a separate team.

We therefore draw specialists from our various assets worldwide and fly them to other terminals where they have no day-to-day connection. This audit team makes a detailed assessment of practices and equipment against the Integrated HSE Management Manual, and advises on improvements.

This operational auditing is about being constructive rather than critical. It is a catalyst for knowledge-sharing and offering fresh perspectives, and is very much a two-way process.

In fact, audit teams have discovered improvements they can introduce to their own terminals.

Safety Council Meetings

We regard adopting good HSE practices as our collective responsibility.

Every terminal therefore has a Safety Council, with both management and employees represented. We hold meetings every month and cover a complete range of critical issues: from the status of the yearly HSE plan and incidents/accidents during the previous period, to investigation reports, KPI reports, learnings from Safety Observation Rounds, newly introduced personal protective systems, employee suggestions, remarks and complaints.

Findings of internal audits are also shared, and the minutes of Council Meetings are communicated to all employees and reported on the Quality Online system.

Emergency Exercises

Every site plays host to full-scale drills, involving not only our own staff but also the local emergency services.

Exercises may range from rescuing an imaginary casualty who is trapped high up on an oil tank roof to a scenario where a fire in one tank must be contained from spreading to the others.

These full-scale physical exercises, in concert with all the relevant external parties and agencies, must be enacted at least once a year.

Crisis Communications

In the event of an emergency, the flow of accurate and timely information to all our stakeholders, can be critical to the success of an emergency response.

VTTI has therefore developed a Crisis Communications Plan ready to be implemented should the need ever arise.

The plan is rehearsed every year at a ‘table-top’ level between the local terminals and VTTI Headquarters. It is also a key element of the full-scale physical exercise described above.

HSE: Personal Safety