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Quality, Safety and Environment

In 2011, the objectives set for the Quality, Safety and Environment Department were achieved with highly satisfactory results, demonstrating the effectiveness or the organisational decision, implemented in 2010, to unify within that department all of the QSE and Prevention & Protection functions present in the territorial structures of the TOS Business Units. This decision strengthened the Group’s coordinating role, as reflected mainly in the following results:

  • achievement of the important target represented by the first renewal of the certifications of the Hera S.p.A. “integrated” quality, safety and environment management system, with excellent results in terms of improved optimisation of processes;
  • obtaining of Emas registration for the Casalegno cogeneration plant in Imola, a result achieved partly thanks to the recognition gained both at national level from the Ecolabel-Ecoaudit Committee and at European level with the nomination for the 2011 European Emas Award;
  • obtaining of ISO 14001 certification for the sampling and analysis activities carried out by the Group’s Laboratories;
  • extension of 9001 certification to energy services by the companies of the Hera Comm Group, already 9001 certified for sales services;
  • obtaining of OHSAS 18001 certification for the Herambiente companies, which had already been awarded ISO 9001 and ISO 14001, in addition to numerous EMAS Registrations;
  • obtaining of OHSAS 18001 certification for the company Frullo Energia Ambiente;
  • obtaining by Famula On-Line of ISO 9001 certification in relation to the design, development, support and delivery of IT services. The process was concluded with the particularly dazzling result of no non-conformities and no observations;
  • obtaining by Uniflotte of OHSAS 18001 certification, in recognition of a project to standardise and unify office procedures at the Group’s sites. The certification of these activities completes the process begun with Uniflotte’s ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 certification.


In 2011, in collaboration with Procurement and Tender Contracts, increased attention was paid to controls on Supplier services, with particular reference to health and safety issues, through a specific training programme for company contact persons, with 1,250 hours of training delivered by the end of the year.

At the same time, internal audits were carried out, with a total of 269 inspections resulting in a reinforcement of the specialisations of the internal resources, encouraging synergies and the dissemination of common operational management procedures across the different sectoral and territorial technical spheres.

All of these measures were in addition to the routine activities planned and carried out by the Quality, Safety and Environment Department for maintenance of the Group’s Integrated Management System, such as checks on consistency and QSE conformity of procedures and instructions drawn up by the different company structures, updating of system documentation, QSE Manual, system procedures, and risk assessment and environmental analysis documents.

In 2011, Hera committed itself to the project “A Year for Safety in the Hera Group”, an important initiative which will involve all of the Group’s 6,654 employees. The aim of the project is to spread a true culture of safety and risk prevention and to improve practices in the workplace and in everyday life. The entire project is managed by a Steering Committee made up of senior managers, and the development of the project will be constantly monitored by a Coordination Group, which will report to the Steering Committee on the progress achieved. Also reporting to this Group is a Scientific Committee consisting of three external occupational health and safety specialists in various disciplines (legal, economic and psychosocial). The Scientific Committee supports the development of the project, establishing and evaluating the consistency criteria and the results achieved on the basis of three main principles:

  1. organisational/managerial, meaning safety as a responsibility shared throughout the company and to which everyone is required to contribute: from the commitment of strategic senior managers to the behaviour of each individual employee;
  2. economic/competitive, which means demonstrating, including through concrete examples, the costs and benefits of a correct safety management system;
  3. communication/cultural, which is the natural complement of the first two principles: it allows information and training channels to be developed which ensure that a culture of safety penetrates the organisation, permeating the areas in which “making safety” creates value for the company and properly highlighting everyone's contribution, so as to increase the tangible and intangible benefits of the commitment made.


"A Year for Safety in the Hera Group" comprises 15 projects, some of which are Group-wide in scope and are therefore centrally managed, while others are assigned to individual territorial structures and may, if the expected results are achieved, also be extended to the territories in a second phase of development of the project.

To date, five projects have been successfully completed. The others, which are still in progress, are expected to conclude by 2012.

Among the impressive results of this initiative, it is worth giving special prominence to the 24% reduction in occupational accidents for Hera S.p.A. compared with the previous year. This is an encouraging result for the multi-utility, confirmed by the same downward trend for both the frequency index (how often an accident happens) and the severity index (how serious the accidents are). The result was achieved thanks to the consolidation of precise quality and safety standards.

The total number of accidents for Hera S.p.A. fell from 254 at the end of 2009 to 215 in 2010, and then further still to 164 in the year just ended. Thus, in the last two years there has been a 35% reduction, while 2010 showed a fall of 24%. The frequency index follows the same downward course, falling from 30.3 in 2010 to 23.4 in 2011, representing a 23% reduction. Finally, the severity index was down by 45%, falling from 1 in 2010 to the current level of 0.55.
The overall reduction in the number of days of accident-related absences also follows the same trend, with a 45% fall from 7,097 days in 2010 to 3,930 in this last year. The reduction in accident numbers was even more pronounced in Hera’s Bologna Territorial Operating Structure (-31.6%), falling from 57 in 2010 to 39 in 2011. The frequency index fell by 28.3% (from 35.4 to 24.71), while the severity index was down by 57.5% (from 1.2 to 0.51).

The reorganisation of the Quality, Safety and Environment Department was completed with the creation of a single QSE Directorate, consistent with the aim of centralising a delicate role of acquisition, dissemination and interpretation of legal prescriptions with a high impact on the regulatory conformity of management processes.

This had the twofold result of releasing the operating, territorial and central structures from the duty of consulting and investigating the “thematic” rules while also offering them a homogeneous interpretative analysis, widening and qualifying the support given to the technical structures, sectors, central departments and subsidiaries of the Group in defining the impacts of those rules within the various management systems.

During this initial start-up phase, the actions took the form of 80 bulletins aimed at the process managers, the Privacy Directorate, QSE and Prevention & Protection Services, and 15 legal explanations and responses to requests for opinions.

As part of the update of the documentation system, an analysis of conformity with legislation was carried out on 13 procedures and instructions in the integrated QSE management system; in collaboration with Procurement and Tender Contracts, modifications were made to the main types of contracts – for supplies, works and services – to bring them in line with the legislative changes on QSE matters, and in collaboration with Environmental Services, similar modifications were made to active contracts for the sale of waste from collection centres.

A further contribution was made – within the specific context of prevention of environmental crimes, which since August 2011 fall within the scope of application of Legislative Decree no. 231/2001 – by the collaboration in the preparation of a special company Protocol and modification of the disciplinary system.

With regard to Privacy, the Directorate completed the organisational restructuring at Group level by defining and attributing specific management roles for ensuring compliance with the legal prescriptions. There were significant regulatory changes in 2011; these included the elimination of details concerning legal entities from the Privacy Code, and the elimination of the obligation to draft the Security Planning Document (SPD), still contained in a law decree which, when converted, could lead to the significant revision of all material in 2012.

“Personal data protection security measures.”

 “In accordance with the provisions of Articles 33 and 34 of Legislative Decree no. 196/03 (known as the Privacy Code) on the subject of security measures aimed at ensuring a minimum protection level for personal data and in compliance with the recommendations in points 19 and 26 of the Technical Specifications in Annex B of the Code, Hera S.p.A., as Proprietor, has drafted and updated the Security Planning Document containing the legally-required information for the reference period.

This document, approved and signed off within the deadline of 31 March this year, is filed at the Company Protocol Office and can also be consulted at DCQSA (Quality, Safety and Environment Department) – Privacy Protection.”