Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Industrial Education and Technology

First Advisor

Steven A. Freeman


The primary objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of a program of auditing on safety performance, when administered in a heavy industrial manufacturing environment. Safety auditing was used as a practical hands-on-training and awareness tool, for hazard identification, risk reduction and behavior modification. Safety performance was analyzed from two perspectives, the number of injury cases and standardized rates. Performance was analyzed using both the t-test and Poisson methodologies. Due to the rarity of injury events, the t-test was an ineffective tool in determining whether the effects of the audit treatment were statistically significant. Poisson analysis, which is better suited to analyze rare events, was able to demonstrate a significant reduction in some injury measures as a result of the auditing process. Poisson probability analysis was used to predict future injury events based on existing data. Auditing provided a means of exposing the organization to frequent and deliberate efforts to raise safety awareness and compliance. The following conclusions were discovered: safety auditing does have a positive impact on safety performance rates and numerical measures, auditing provided a means of exposing the organization to frequent and deliberate efforts to raise safety awareness and compliance, and statistical significance was discovered in reducing the number of lost time and combined lost time and OSHA recordable injuries. Based on the results of this study, follow-up studies should be conducted on manufacturing organizations that have a safety performance higher than the Bureau of Labor Statistics industry average. Studying an organization whose safety performance in the areas of first aid, OSHA recordable and lost time rates, which are further away from zero, will give researchers a larger range for observation of improvement initiatives and performance.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

Copyright Owner

James O. Wright



Proquest ID


File Format


File Size

138 pages