Mitsui Chemicals

Safety and Prevention

Safety and Prevention Training

The Mitsui Chemicals Group is implementing various initiatives, including training, toward nurturing human resources with a high awareness of dangerous situations and the ingraining of a safety culture throughout the Group.

Safety Day

To prevent the recurrence of accidents like the April 22, 2012, explosion and fire at the resorcinol production facility at our Iwakuni-Ohtake Works, Mitsui Chemicals has designated April 22 as Safety Day. In fiscal 2018, Safety Day events were held at each production site in Japan and at the Head Office. Continuing on from the previous year, and with the aim of giving the event a greater presence and more of a sense of tension, we simultaneously relayed a live broadcast of the President’s moral discourse on safety to a total of six facilities, and all employees reaffirmed their commitment to making safety their top priority in everything they do. Experts from inside and outside Mitsui Chemicals also gave lectures about safety and other related topics at each site.

In fiscal 2018, presentations were given on Safety Day at each production site

Production base Attending Directors, Head Office General Managers Simultaneous live broadcast Speakers Presentations
Ichihara Works * Kazuharu Nara Japan Manned Space Systems Corporation Five Tips for Increasing Safety by “Nontechnical Skills”
Ichihara Works Mobara Branch Factory
(includes the Plant Operation Technology Training Center and Mobara Research & Development Center)
Managing Executive Officer Hiroshi Tsunashima Undertaken Takeshi Kusugami R&D Center, East Japan Railway Company Let’s Try to Think about the “Basic Actions of Administrators and Managers” in Safety Management!
Nagoya Works * Yasuhiro Sugano Security Technologies G, Safety & Tourism Engineering Dept., Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. (Safety Technical Education)
Osaka Works * Masamitsu Tamura Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo Toward Safer Chemical Plants – The Fundamentals of Safety and Fostering of Safe Environments
Iwakuni-Ohtake Works Senior Managing Executive Officer Hideki Matsuo
General Manager Naruyuki Iwanaga
Undertaken Masayoshi Nakamura Specially Appointed Professor, Tokyo Institute of Technology Learning from Major Accidents – Safety Management from Now
Omuta Works Undertaken Higashi Ito The Group for Safety Engineering (formerly at Denka Company Limited) Role-sharing in Voluntary Safety Activities
Sodegaura Center * Akira Tose Specially Appointed Associate Professor, Niigata University Improvement of Laboratory Safety Culture
Hokkaido Mitsui Chemicals Undertaken Works General Manager Seiji Sasaki Hokkaido Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. The History of Accidents at Hokkaido Factories
Shimonoseki Mitsui Chemicals Undertaken Kozo Murata Fire and Security Section, General Affairs Department, Yamaguchi Prefecture High-Pressure Gas Security Administration in Yamaguchi Prefecture
Mitsui Chemicals & SKC Polyurethanes Tokuyama Factory Undertaken (Broadcast from Iwakuni-Ohtake Works) (Broadcast from Iwakuni-Ohtake Works) (Iwakuni-Ohtake Works)
Mitsui Chemicals Head Office President Tsutomu Tannowa
Executive Vice President Masaharu Kubo, and other directors working at Head Office
Undertaken (Head Office Event: Looking Back at the Accident)
The video of President Tannowa’s moral discourse on safety at the Head Office safety pledge ceremony was transmitted at a later date.
As April 22, 2018 was a Sunday, the events were held on April 20.

President Tannowa during his moral discourse on safety at the Head Office safety pledge ceremony

Hazard Prediction (Kiken Yochi, or “KY”) as well as Pointing and Calling

At the Mitsui Chemicals Group, we undertake initiatives at parent company works and at domestic and overseas affiliates to entrench and energize hazard prediction (Kiken Yochi, or “KY”) and pointing and calling.

At parent company Works, planning, implementing, evaluating and improving each Works leads to a raised level of operations. During the course of these initiatives, as it is important to develop human resources who are able to recognize dangerous things as being dangerous and take safe action to prevent danger, KY education is implemented on an ongoing basis at each Works.
KY trainers are chosen at each Works to perform as drivers of these initiatives, and Companywide meetings held once per fiscal term. At these meetings, KY trainers report on the status of KY initiatives at their Works, and present communications from the Head Office. Sharing information enables KY trainers to reference the information with regard to KY activities at their own Works.

With regard to KY and pointing and calling training for domestic and overseas affiliates, we have provided training support on an ongoing basis at the Safety & Environment Technology Division. That the significance and necessity of KY and pointing and calling training are understood at all affiliates, assists in their use in actual work situations and is thus helping to lead to their entrenchment.
The training incorporates exercises, presentations and team discussions that are appropriate to actual work situations, looking back on their daily tasks, and raising awareness so that safer actions can be taken. Key men are of particular necessity to entrench KY and pointing and calling, and the Company is encouraging their development through training

KY training sessions

  Training Time per Person/Session
Number of Attendees
Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. 3.5 608
Domestic Subsidiaries & Affiliates 3 411
Overseas Subsidiaries & Affiliates 4 122
Total 1,141

Near-miss Activities

At each Mitsui Chemicals production site, information on workers’ narrowly avoided major accidents or disasters, or “near-misses,” that occur as a result of operations, is identified, and the details are shared within the organization. These sharing activities are ongoing. In line with the occupational safety and health management system for each production site, the organization determines the cause of these near misses, as well as preventive measures. Those concerned are provided with the awareness gained, and plans are put into effect that cover both concrete matters, as well as more intangible issues, in the course of operations.
In carrying out these preventive measures, Mitsui Chemicals continues to secure necessary resources. Examples of specific representative measures are as follows.

Ichihara Works

We are extracting high-risk items from the assumed near-miss* cases submitted by worksite employees and implementing activities to examine measures to deal with them. In addition to holding a monthly review meeting of experts selected from within the worksite to consider countermeasures depending on the degree of danger, the participating members of the study meetings serve a leading role in implementing countermeasures and in making them known within the worksite. We also checked the status of maintaining and managing the near-miss countermeasures implemented so far. Through these review meetings, we are trying to ascertain the potential risks from behavioral accidents at our worksite at an early stage and thus prevent them.

Assumed near-miss:
A case in which each person pictured work procedures or behavior patterns and felt that there was a danger that they would lead to a near-miss. As opposed to a near-miss that was actually experienced.

Small-group Activities

Each Works at Mitsui Chemicals conducts small-group activities that undertake activities in group units of small numbers of people to deal with issues or matters causing concern, such as, in view of the characteristics of a Works, enhancing production workplace capabilities, refining mindsets and human resources development, workplace revitalization and business improvements.
We share the results of the small-group activities throughout a Works by means of presentations, and the honoring of best practices leads to heightened motivation. We are deploying the activities horizontally, such as by making reference to them in workplace activities, and promoting the revitalization of workplaces and Works as a whole as well as a raised level of operations. Typical examples of specific activities are as follows.

Omuta Works

On February 16, 2018, we held presentations of small-group activities at the Omuta Works at which 10 small groups showcased their autonomous initiatives. These presentations remain firmly entrenched as high-quality activities for adopting as themes matters that are causing concern in the workplace and presenting solutions to them. At the presentation we imparted to each workplace best practice cases shared from other workplaces that will lead to activities from next fiscal year onward.

Presentations of small-group activities, Omuta Works
Presentations of small-group activities,
Omuta Works

Iwakuni-Ohtake Works

On March 20, 2018, the Iwakuni-Ohtake Works held an event at which 11 teams, selected from a total of 122 teams, gave presentations of small-group activities. With the goals of “human development” and “organizational development,” this marked the fourth year of the small-group activities that had been resumed from 2014. Taking up themes that included the reductions in work duties to which consideration is being given at the Iwakuni-Ohtake Works and at other Works, the overall level of activities is rising. It is believed that amassing these results will lead to work style reform and the enhancement of our Works’ competitiveness.

Presentations of small-group activities, Iwakuni-Ohtake Works
Presentations of small-group activities,
Iwakuni-Ohtake Works

Nagoya Works

On March 20, 2018, the Nagoya Works held its NEXT activities presentation. For the presentations, 11 teams selected from all 45 teams at the Works reported on activities that focused on improving work productivity. The level of activity is increasing year by year, and next fiscal year we will develop bottom-up activities at all Works that will unite group members around their team leaders.

Presentations of small-group activities, Nagoya Works
Presentations of small-group activities,
Nagoya Works

Best Plants Awards

The purpose of the Best Plant Award is to revitalize Works by honoring the excellent production sections for their activities related to safety, environment, quality and production technologies. Having started this system in fiscal 2004, since fiscal 2013 Mitsui Chemicals has focused outside the field of safety achievements and the like but also on safety processes and recognized through these awards the successes and hardships of production sections.
In fiscal 2017, 18 applications were submitted from domestic and overseas production sites, one of which was selected for the President's Awards and seven for Production & Technology Center Executive’s Awards. The Company’s global expansion is advancing due not only to the Mitsui Chemicals parent company but also to award-winning domestic and overseas affiliates.
It should be noted that along with the aforementioned awards, we simultaneously awarded the General Manager of Works’ Award and General Managers of Headquarters Award.

Best Plants Awards 2017

President’s Award for Best Plant
Petrochemical Materials Section, Manufacturing Dept.-1, Ichihara Works

Production & Technology Center Executive’s Award
Utility/Environment Section, Manufacturing Dept., Nagoya Works
Electronic Materials Section, Manufacturing Dept.-2, Osaka Works
Healthcare Section, Fine Chemicals Production Dept., Omuta Works
Saitama Office, Mitsui Chemicals Industrial Products, Ltd.
Shimizu Factory, Japan Composite Co., Ltd.

View of President’s Award ceremony (Petrochemical Materials Section, Manufacturing Dept.-1, Ichihara Works)
View of President’s Award ceremony (Petrochemical Materials Section, Manufacturing Dept.-1, Ichihara Works)

In addition, we toured the outstanding workplaces recognized by the President’s Award for Best Plant as well as held an exchange meeting as a means to exchange information. Starting in fiscal 2015, this year marks the third time we have held this event with the aim of enabling employees to gain awareness that is difficult to obtain in their own workplaces and Works, provide opportunities for line managers to share their concerns and encourage each other, and improve the safety culture throughout the Mitsui Chemicals Group.
Held over three days in February 2018, this year’s exchange meeting was attended by six line managers and staff. We shared activities and exchanged opinions at THAI PET RESIN CO., LTD., winner of the President’s Award for Best Plant for fiscal 2016, and toured the plants of affiliates GRAND SIAM COMPOSITES CO., LTD. and MITSUI HYGIENE MATERIALS (THAILAND) CO., LTD. that are located in the vicinity.

Exchange meeting (THAI PET RESIN CO., LTD.)

Exchange meeting (THAI PET RESIN CO., LTD.)

Exchange meeting (THAI PET RESIN CO., LTD.)

Mitsui Chemicals’ Plant Operation Technology Training Center

The Company opened the doors of its Mitsui Chemicals Plant Operation Technology Training Center (located at the Mobara Branch Factory) in October 2006 as a facility for training plant operation personnel. In May 2007, the Company also established the same type of center in Nagoya. Mainly training operators involved with chemicals in Mobara and operators of processing systems in Mobara, the Company is working to enhance its production workplace capabilities. In addition to having expanded its curriculum and the number of employees eligible for training in the more than 10 years that have elapsed since the centers opened, the Company has been taking steps to improve its training programs. The Company also accepts students from overseas affiliates and conducts training in English and Chinese.
In 2010, the Company also set up a hands-on safety training facility at Mitsui Phenols Singapore Pte. Ltd., one of its affiliates in Singapore, where training mainly for employees in the Singapore area is conducted. In 2011, the Company licensed its entire training facility to the Siam Group of Thailand, with which the Company formed a joint venture, the plan being to conduct the training of mainly Thai employees.
In this way, the Company is developing “experience and feeling” training not only in Japan but also overseas and promoting across two groups -the training of employees to excel at all aspects of safety-centered operations and equipment handling while being able to solve problems on their own.

Mitsui Chemicals’ Plant Operation Technology Training Center (Mobara and Nagoya) Training Sessions for Mitsui Chemicals Group Employees

Training Category Training Time per
Number of Attendees
FY2016 FY2017
Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. For Plant Operators When joined Company 3~14 102 122
Follow-up training (six months after joining Company) 28 121 142
Promoted staff (3-4 years after joining Company) 28 75 80
Workplace managers (8 years or more after joining Company) 14 53 57
For Engineers When joined Company 7~14 21 23
3-5 years after joining Company 21 10 18
For Researchers 7~14 109 78
Others 2~7 113 609
For employees of domestic affiliates 2~25 324 212
For employees of overseas affiliates 14 50 54
Total 978 1395

Since fiscal 2015, the experience-based training previously conducted internally at Mobara has been open to individuals from companies outside of the Group. Consequently, we are accepting more than 300 external attendees every year.
Leveraging past cases of various types of accidents and problems experienced within the Company, Mitsui Chemicals will continue to actively provide experience-based, safety-focused training curriculums to companies and individuals outside the Mitsui Chemicals Group as a means to contribute to the development of human resources for production worksites throughout the industrial world.

Track Record of Mitsui Chemicals’ Plant Operation Technology Training Center External Training Sessions (Mobara)/Responses to Plant Tour Requests (Mobara and Nagoya)

  FY2016 FY2017
Number of Training Attendees 388 344
Number of Plant Visitors 643 695

Mitsui Chemicals’ Plant Operation Technology Training Centers (Mobara and Nagoya)