Topics of Importance Human Health & Safety

2015 Performance


Each quarter we pause to remember four disastrous incidents from our past that killed and injured members of the public and of our team. In pausing, we remind ourselves of the consequences of failing in our duty to be safe.

Our rates of 0.66 recordable injuries per 200,000 employee hours worked and 0.12 lost-days injuries per 200,000 employee hours worked were the lowest they have been since we began tracking them—all during a time when the number of hours that employees worked increased.

Our employees spent approximately 140,000 hours in 2015 building their safety knowledge and skills.

In April 2015, for the second consecutive year, the American Gas Association recognized our Gas Distribution business segment as an industry leader in employee safety with the Safety Achievement Award for the lowest Days Away, Restricted or Transferred (DART) incident rate among companies of similar size and type.

Strengthening Our Risk and Safety Culture

In 2015, we continued to take multiple steps to strengthen our risk and safety culture:

Assessing Our Progress

LP and our Major Projects business unit (MP) participated in the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association’s Safety Culture Assessment, an industry-wide employee survey based on the National Energy Board Safety Culture Framework. Results of the survey help identify those areas where Canada’s pipeline industry is performing well in terms of safety culture and where improvement is needed. Both LP and MP scored in the “best in class” range for all categories of the framework.  

We also established a cross-business-segment focus group to develop our own comprehensive risk and safety culture assessment framework to provide information on drivers of safety and operational reliability that will lead to focused improvement initiatives and leadership "calls to action." Through this initiative, we will conduct a comprehensive evaluation every two to three years, targeted evaluations annually, and ongoing monitoring of trends and behaviors that support or erode safety culture.

DuPont has conducted two risk and safety culture perception surveys (in 2011 and 2013) for us, using a recognized methodology that enabled us to compare Enbridge to other companies in the oil and gas industry, as well as to companies in best-in-class industries. The results of those two surveys indicate that we are on the path to achieving an interdependent risk and safety culture. DuPont will conduct the next survey in the first quarter of 2016. As noted in the preceding paragraph, we will be transitioning to a more comprehensive risk and safety culture framework in the years ahead.

Addressing Human Factors

In 2014, we rolled out an online course throughout the company to provide all employees and contractors with an introduction to and grounding in the concept of human factors and how they can contribute to safety and operational reliability incidents. We require all new employees and provisioned contractors to take the course when they join the company.

Following the positive reception by our employees and contractors, we are building on the foundation created by the course to sustain awareness and understanding of human factors within the organization and our industry through several initiatives:

  • We have developed advanced training to help Enbridge investigators learn from incidents, improve operational safety, and better integrate human factors, engineering and organizational factors. The training will result in more consistent investigations across the company.
  • In 2015, we produced a series of infographics for our employees and contractors that explore the role human factors played in recent Enbridge incidents. The infographics, which illustrate the actual impact and implications of decisions and actions taken during the incidents, can be viewed on Enbridge’s intranet for employees, are published as posters and presented in departmental safety meetings. This initiative has been well received across the company and will continue in 2016.
  • We are involved in developing a Canadian Standards Association (CSA) EXP-248 Pipeline Human Factors Express Document, which will provide guidance on human factors for the pipeline industry. We expect that the document will provide an overview of the tools and techniques for human-factors assessment and mitigation along the lifecycle of a pipeline, and help establish benchmarks for human error.

Vegetation Management: Learning from a Fatality

We are strongly committed to being a learning organization, which means not only learning lessons from our incidents but also taking concrete actions to mitigate risks.

As we reported in our 2014 CSR Report, in August 2014 a contract worker clearing vegetation along one of our Gas Pipelines, Processing & Energy Services business segment’s (GPP&ES) rights-of-way in Texas struck an Enbridge natural gas pipeline with his equipment, causing the pipeline to rupture. Tragically, the individual sustained injuries from the rupture that resulted in his death.

In response, we have implemented a number of initiatives to mitigate the risks associated with clearing vegetation.

Following the incident, our Operations and Integrity Committee (OIC) directed that learnings from the investigation be shared and incorporated into policies and procedures across the company. The working group charged with this task developed an Enterprise Vegetation Management Minimum Standard, which we implemented in 2015. The standard incorporates the best enterprise-wide practices, as well as learnings from the incident in the area of brush, vegetation and tree clearing on rights-of-way.

Promoting Driving Safety

Because driving is one of the most significant and pervasive hazards our team faces every day, both on and off the job, and with its potential to affect all of our employees, driving safety is an ongoing area of focus for us.

In 2015, we rolled out our enterprise-wide DriveWISE campaign as one component of a broader effort to enhance safe driving performance across the company. Built around the acronym WISE, the campaign focuses on four key behaviors that contribute to improved driving safety: Walk around your vehicle; Immerse yourself in the safe driving mindset and plan your route; Secure all items in the car, including yourself; and Exit your parking spot safely. The campaign makes use of multiple internal communications channels, including toolkits for people leaders to use in engaging their teams, posters, intranet content, videos, and digital signage in our offices. We will continue to assess the effectiveness of the campaign, conduct ongoing communication to sustain awareness of and promote the DriveWISE behaviors, and will provide employees opportunities to share and reinforce the DriveWISE campaign.

Going forward, we will continue to closely monitor motor vehicle incident frequencies and causes, gauge the impact of all our initiatives and determine the need for additional initiatives.

Also in 2015:

  • We became an active participating member in the Network of Employers for Traffic Safety (NETS). Our membership provides us the opportunity to conduct industry benchmarking in driving safety and evaluate fleet and journey management programs of other NETS members. To participate in the NETS “Strength in Numbers” Fleet Safety Benchmark Program, we provided our motor vehicle incidents data for 2014. In their Fleet Safety Benchmark Report for 2014 data, we ranked in the top quartile of all participating companies.
  • GD, in addition to promoting the company-wide DriveWISE campaign, introduced a Driver Safety Challenges course—an innovative way to keep preventable Motor Vehicle Incidents (MVIs) and safe driving habits in the spotlight. Designed to address the four top causes of preventable MVIs and raise hazard awareness, the course required drivers to complete a number of challenging maneuvers.

Recognizing Employee Initiatives

A key way to build and reinforce a positive risk and safety culture is taking time to recognize members of our team who are demonstrating individual and grassroots safety leadership and interdependence.

In an effort to better communicate and share these positive safety examples through the company, in 2015, we began publishing safety profiles of employees on our intranet. Every two weeks, we profile a member of the Enbridge team and what they are doing to support a strong and interdependent risk and safety culture.

With almost 11,000 employees and contractors across the company, we are tapping into the “power of the crowd” to help us identify candidates for the safety profiles. Employees and contractors can self-identify and provide the subject matter for a potential safety profile by responding to a questionnaire. Alternatively, they can email the questionnaire to co-workers who they think are grassroots safety leaders and request that they participate.

For its part, GD has launched a safety recognition program to highlight the positive behaviors that are helping GD reach important safety milestones. Each year, GD recognizes one field employee and one office employee as Safety Ambassadors for their leadership in making positive changes to GD’s risk and safety culture. All nominated employees are recognized as Safety Champions. GD also recognizes depots for reaching three, five or 10 years without a lost-time injury—a pillar of GD’s employee recognition program.

Remembering Disastrous Incidents through Stories

In 2014, we introduced a series of foundational safety stories to our employees and contractors. The stories focus on four disastrous incidents from our past that killed and injured members of the public and of our team, disrupted lives and communities, and damaged the environment.

Each quarter we pause, across the company, to remember these incidents on their anniversaries to remind ourselves of the consequences of failing in our duty to be safe. For example, on November 28, 2015, we remembered the eighth anniversary of the Milepost 912 incident, in which two members of our team perished in a fire that erupted during pipeline repair work near Clearbrook, Minnesota.

Since we launched the stories last year, we have asked all Enbridge leaders to have meetings to review and discuss each story with their teams as we approach the anniversary of each incident. The foundational stories are intended to become a safety touchstone for every individual at Enbridge and an opportunity for us to lead our teams in an exploration of what safety means for us as an organization.

Also, every year in April, employees of our GD business segment take time to come together for a Safety Stand Down. The event is coordinated around Canada’s annual National Day of Mourning, when people across Canada stop to remember workers killed, injured or disabled on the job. In 2015, the Stand Down focused on a GD incident—another demonstration of our commitment to turn incidents into opportunities to learn and share experiences.

Looking Out for Safety

We all contribute to our safe and reliable operations by keeping safety as our primary consideration in all actions and decisions.

In addition, we all contribute by performing proactive formal safety observations on each other to provide a systematic way to address and measure both desired and at-risk behaviors. Properly conducted safety observations give effective, interdependent and results-oriented feedback to drive improvement. In 2015, employees and contractors made and submitted approximately 174,000 safety observations.

Employee Training

Each of our business segments has evaluated the training that its employees need to safely perform their jobs and has created position-specific descriptions. Using this information, we have created training matrices that enable us to ensure that each employee has the necessary training and knowledge.

Our employees spent approximately 140,000 hours in 2015 building their safety knowledge and skills. Over the past nine years, we have more than tripled the average number of environment, health and safety (EH&S) training hours per employee.

Year Total EH&S Training Hours EH&S Training Hours/Employee
2007 25,015 4.9
2008 30,418 5.4
2009 38,007 6.5
2010 31,620 5.2
2011 36,567 5.6
2012 101,503 13.7
2013 161,960 19.9
2014 162,080 18.3
2015 139,123 15.9*

* In 2014, we rolled out two new courses that were mandatory throughout the company (Human Factors and Lifesaving Rules). Because employees must renew these courses only every two to three years, our total EH&S training hours and EH&S training hours per employee were lower in 2015 than 2014.

Joint Management-Worker Health and Safety Programs

One hundred percent of the company’s total workforce is represented in formal joint management-worker health safety programs.

In 2011, each of our operating business segments undertook an initiative to enhance their risk and safety culture. In 2012, the business segments established Health & Safety Committees to promote engagement at all levels and to establish clear lines of communication for decision making.

The risk and safety culture perception survey conducted by DuPont in 2013 measured the progress of this initiative. The results indicated that we had increased our risk and safety culture strength by 13 percent since 2011, thanks in part to our Health & Safety Committees. DuPont will conduct its next survey in the first quarter of 2016.

Contractor Safety Management

We are committed to protecting the health and safety of all individuals affected by our activities, including our contractors. We view our contractors as our extended partners. We want them to view safety the way we do, and aim to ensure that they uphold our core values of Integrity, Safety and Respect, our Health and Safety Principles and our Six Lifesaving Rules. For more information, please see the Sustainable Supply Chain & Procurement section of this report.

Executive Field Visits

Our senior leaders demonstrate their personal commitment to safe and reliable operations through field visits. Over the course of 2015, our executive leaders, including those outside of the operational business segments (LP, GPP&ES and GD), participated in 155 field visits across the organization, connecting with hundreds of employees. This is a new record high for the field-visit program and nearly doubles the number of field-visit submissions in 2013 when the program first began.

During these visits, executives meet with employees in field locations to better understand the work our employees are doing, hear about challenges they face in their daily activities, talk about safety, and identify areas where we can improve our safety practices and performance.

Ensuring Safe Workplaces and Communities

Our 2015 Health and Safety Performance

Our health and safety performance in 2015 included the following metrics:

  • 60 recordable employee injuries (compared with 77 in 2014 and 82 in 2013)
  • 0.66 recordable injuries per 200,000* employee hours worked (compared with 0.94 in 2014 and 1.14 in 2013, and representing an improvement to our six-year average of 1.13)
  • 0.12 lost-days injuries per 200,000* employee hours worked (compared with 0.11 in 2014 and 0.17 in 2013, and representing an improvement to our six-year average of 0.20)
  • There were no employee or contractor fatalities

*The formula for calculating injury rate (whether it be recordable injuries or lost-days injuries) is: number of injuries X 200,000 / employee hours worked, where the 200,000 hours in the formula represents the equivalent of 100 employees working 40 hours per week, 50 weeks per year.

In 2015, our employees worked more than 18 million hours, which is an increase of almost two million hours above the number they worked in 2014 (16.4 million hours). While our 0.66 recordable injuries per 200,000 employee hours worked and 0.12 lost-days injuries per 200,000 employee hours worked rates did not equal zero, they were the lowest that they have been since we began tracking them—all during a time when the number of hours that employees worked increased.

We report all incidents, whether regulators consider them to be recordable or not, to local supervisors, as well as to our Health and Safety Department for tracking, trending and communication regarding lessons learned. In addition, every quarter, we analyze the nature of any injuries that took place, as well as the type and root cause of the incidents that led to the injuries. Our analysis leads us to take specific actions to drive down incidents and sustainably improve our safety performance.

In 2015, our Gas Distribution business segment (GD) demonstrated strong evidence of its progress toward the goal of being 100 percent safe. In April 2015, for the second consecutive year, the American Gas Association recognized it as an industry leader in employee safety with the Safety Achievement Award for the lowest Days Away, Restricted or Transferred (DART) incident rate among companies of similar size and type. Then, on October 23, 2015, GD reached the milestone of two years without a lost-time injury. Although some operating groups within GD have gone for longer periods of time without a lost-time injury, this is the longest continuous period that the entire business segment has realized this result.

We have included all of Enbridge’s health and safety metrics (enterprise-wide and by business segment) in our Enbridge 2015 Health & Safety Metrics spreadsheet.


Our absentee rate in 2015 was 4.65 days absent per employee, compared with 4.23 days in 2014 and 3.86 days in 2013. We use the “average number of days absent per employee” metric because we do not track scheduled hours in our Human Resources system.


Employee Wellness Program

In 2014, we implemented a Wellness Program in the U.S. that provides employees with the tools, resources and financial incentives to promote and reward healthy behaviors. Then in May 2015, we launched a Canada-wide wellness program, including several enhancements to align with current best practices. In 2016, we will harmonize the two programs. For more information, please see the Employee Relations section of this report. [provide link]

Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace

The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) has indicated that one in five Canadians will personally experience a mental health problem or illness in their lifetime. Mental problems and illnesses impact productivity and, potentially, worker focus on the job. Supporting both the physical and mental health of employees will help support our goal of 100 percent safety. 

Our GD business segment has committed to implementing CSA-Z1003, the “National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace.” Implementing the standard will help organizations reduce the risks of psychological harm, promote psychological well-being and support employees with mental health issues in the workplace. GD is also one of approximately 40 Canadian organizations participating in an implementation case study being run by the MHCC.

During 2015, GD raised leadership awareness of the standard and the workplace factors that impact mental health. Ongoing communication helped raise employee awareness and reduce stigma related to mental health. To engage employees in learning how to take care of their own mental health and support others, GD also leveraged Enbridge’s new Wellness Portal and Mental Health Mindfulness Workshop Challenge, which more than 1,250 Enbridge employees completed.

Public Safety

We take customer and public safety seriously and believe it is our obligation to raise the bar in both areas.

Customer research by our GD business segment indicates that GD’s Safety Index is a strong 83 percent. This index covers customer perceptions in various safety aspects, including that “employee and customer safety are top priorities,” “we promote the safe use of natural gas” and “we act safely in our distribution of natural gas.”

GD also executes a series of public awareness programs, including carbon monoxide awareness and Call Before You Dig (Ontario One Call) campaigns, an annual scratch and sniff bill insert, and stakeholder outreach to protect those who live and work around GD’s system.

GD’s programs and campaigns have received industry recognition. In 2015, GD received the Canadian Gas Association Award for Public Safety Leadership for its Six Second Safety campaign—an engaging, dedicated website and public awareness campaign designed to educate the public on natural gas safety. Twenty brief natural gas safety-tip videos can be viewed on the website and shared through various social media channels. The campaign has resulted in 15 million online ad impressions and 30,000 Twitter engagements, and more than 2,000 new Twitter users followed our account. For more information, please see the Emergency Preparedness & Response section of this report.

2014 Enbridge Safety Report to the Community

In September 2015, we released our 2014 Enbridge Safety Report to the Community, with an online publication at enbridge.com and hard-copy distribution to thousands of our neighbors near our pipelines and facilities across the Canada and the U.S. The report includes stories that highlight the important work being done by our team members, and individuals and groups out in the community.

Industrial Hygiene Programs

We maintain industrial hygiene programs under which we identify stressors (such as airborne contaminants, noise, heat stress) in our workplaces, and recommend steps to prevent injury and illness. We also regularly assess the effectiveness of the various controls we use to protect workers, including engineering controls, administrative controls and personal protective equipment.