Health and safety


Preventing accidents and working in a safe environment are primary objectives for Snam. Proof of this can be seen in the setting up, within the companies, of appropriate organisational structures responsible for defining, scheduling and controlling plans for improving workplace health and safety.

Within the group, a distinction is made between the duties of general management, which are centralised within Snam, and the duties of special management, coordination and support for operating units, which are assigned to the individual companies. Specifically, the centralised organisational structures:

  • ensure the safeguarding of know-how;
  • assist corporate units in identifying the most effective technical and organisational solutions;
  • define guidelines, methodologies, standards and operating methods to be implemented for all of the companies;
  • define, implement and maintain management systems, including by means of technical audits.

The operating companies maintain an internal organisational structure which allows them to operate with an adequate level of decision-making autonomy.

In 2011, Snam continued implementing planned actions aimed at reducing workplace risk factors, grouped together within the “Objective Safety” project (see box below).


Commitment and ongoing action in recent years have enabled a significant reduction in employee accident indicator values. Over the year there were 22 accidents (-40% compared to 2010), none of which was fatal. The frequency index was 2.22 (-37.5% compared to 2010) and the severity index was 0.06 (-40% compared to 2010).

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Health and safety indicators




Total employee accidents






Employee accidents at work frequency index (bar chart)
Employee accidents at work severity index (bar chart)

Snam places great emphasis on health and safety issues with its suppliers and contractors, for which it requires observance of quality standards comparable to those it puts into effect.

While contract work is being carried out, it ensures that activities are monitored periodically by the “Contract Manager” to verify observance of contractual obligations and agreements made during the work, and also promotes the improvement and prevention actions deemed most appropriate.

Contractor safety was also the subject of a dedicated session within the “Suppliers’ Day for Sustainability” workshop, during which Snam reiterated the importance of adopting behaviour in line with prevention principles and stated that safety indices will have an increasingly significant weight among supplier qualification and evaluation criteria. For 2012 specific projects are being studied for sharing with suppliers the best practices on the subject adopted in operations managed directly by Snam.



Contractor accidents at work frequency index (bar chart)
Contractor accidents at work severity index (bar chart)

Following the rupture of the S. Stefano di Magra-Cortemaggiore methane pipeline, which occurred on 18 January 2012 in the Municipality of Tresana (MS), causing a gas leakage and fire, a fatal accident occurred involving a worker of the company contracted for the work. Investigations are under way by the Massa Public Prosecutor’s Office, which has already named a court-appointed expert witness, who has been assigned the task of ascertaining the causes – and effects – of the rupture, as well as any other circumstances useful for purposes of these investigations.



Objective Safety, a project for translating values into behaviour

Launched in late 2010, the three-year Objective Safety project carried out initiatives and actions in 2011 aimed at influencing the culture of Snam personnel to improve attitudes, behaviour and personal responsibility with respect to workplace safety. The actions go hand in hand with those of the Company, creating synergies and even more effective results. The project’s goal is to reduce group accidents by involving people, so that paying heed to safety becomes a distinctive element of the corporate culture.

Objective Safety thus develops new initiatives, at the same time leveraging the best practices present in some corporate areas with the intention of making them common practice throughout the entire group.

By putting prizes up for grabs, the Safety Trophy and the Zero Accidents Prize encourage all company units to team up to reduce accidents in terms of both frequency and severity, aiming to bring them down to zero. The Safety Trophy is competed for within each individual company by workers in operating areas subdivided into “homogeneous” groups by local area, which vie to achieve the best results in terms of workplace safety (number of accidents, severity, proposals for improvement, reporting of near misses, etc.).


The Zero Accidents Prize, on the other hand, is extended to all corporate organisational units and puts prizes up for grabs for all “homogeneous groups” who meet the goal of completing 365 consecutive days without an accident.

Accurate monitoring of scores, provisional quarterly rankings and “tallies” affixed in the individual units showing the number of consecutive days without an accident help to keep people focused on the goal and increase personal involvement in the performance of an employee’s “team”.

Among the new initiatives introduced, Safety Walks reinvigorate the way safety is handled, creating occasions in which top management, as active project sponsors, meet up with Snam personnel to shadow their operational activities on site, reiterating with their presence the importance of participatory involvement by all company staff to achieve effective workplace safety. Safety Walks are held at all group companies from May to October at various sites spread throughout Italy: in 2011 the Verona and Venice operating centres, the Sergnano station and the Panigaglia plant were involved.

The group’s intranet site with articles supporting project initiatives and results, the statements affixed at the headquarters of the four companies for purposes of reiterating the goals sought by the project, the videos designed to summarise the meaning of the initiatives carried out in images, and a dedicated newsletter are all communication and training tools that help consolidate knowledge and revive attention on the subject. In fact, in June 2011, the newsletter Objective Safety News was started, dealing specifically and in-depth with workplace health and safety issues, risks and tools. The newsletter, produced in paper format and distributed to all Snam group personnel, contains in each issue not only in-depth information on specific safety topics and explanations on the proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE), but also a comic strip in which the project mascot, Gaspare, a keen but slightly distracted manual worker, learns, partly through mistakes, the importance of unflagging attention to observing safety rules.

In November 2011, the project celebrated its first birthday and the significant results achieved by group companies in terms of reducing the number of accidents. On this occasion, top management renewed its decided commitment, confirmed as one of the drivers characterising the project, through a video by Snam’s CEO geared toward employees and disseminated throughout the group companies.

The year 2012 will be a year of renewed commitment to the Objective Safety Project, which will shore up the initiatives already started and introduce additional actions aimed at improving results continually.

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Global reporting initiative

The results in this report obtained the A+ level of compliance to GRI reporting guidelines

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