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Analysis of a safety climate measure for occupational vehicle drivers and implications for safer workplaces

By Andrew R. Wills, Herbert C. Biggs and Barry C. Watson


Safety climate, defined as workers' shared perceptions about the importance of safety to their organisation, has received increasing attention as a construct that is useful for benchmarking organisational safety and as a way of measuring the socio-organisational antecedents of safety performance. Few studies have utilised pre-existing safety climate measures and as a result of this, there is limited information about the generalisability of the construct and its underlying dimensions across organisations and industries. This is an important step towards establishing safety climate as a generic organisational construct which can be reliably measured. In those few cases where studies have used existing measures, results indicate inconsistencies in the underlying factor structures. Accordingly, using a sample of 321 employees from three separate organisations and industries, this study examined the factor structure of a modified version of an existing measure (the Safety Climate Questionnaire [SCQ]). Principal components factor analysis revealed that the original factor structure was upheld by the current sample (with the exception of two factors collapsing into one). This provides support for the generic nature of safety climate as it is operationalised by the SCQ. Additional items were included and emerged as two dimensions, providing support for the generalisability of these new factors across the organisations and industries employed. The results are of theoretical and practical significance as they provide evidence for the generic structure of the construct across organisations and industries, and exemplify how a measure of safety climate could be usefully employed in disability management planning and early intervention strategies

Topics: 170107 Industrial and Organisational Psychology, Safety climate, work, related driving, fleet safety, occupational safety
Publisher: Australian Society of Rehabilitation Counsellors
Year: 2005
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