Young Hygienist Snapshot: Peter Calder

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Pete and I worked together long long ago on a heavily contaminated site in the middle of Sydney, back in the days when I was an Engineer and Pete was a Safety Advisor…boy have things changed! Pete is now a Health and Safety Specialist with BHP Billiton, Illawarra and manages the Health and Hygiene program for Illawarra Coal. Pete has a Masters in OHS from the UOW and is currently in the process of completing the Masters in Occupational Hygiene Practice at UOW also. Outside of work he keeps very busy training and completing in triathlons of all things! Here is 5-mins with Pete:

Best location I have worked: There isn’t one specific location that stands out, however working across numerous projects has been enjoyable, as it allows diversity. Working with processing plants, construction, civil, electrical, facilities maintenance, transport & logistics and now mining has given me a broad range of skills which I can apply anywhere.

The best thing about my job is: The range of work I am able to undertake. Working within Health, Safety and Environment provides an opportunity to work closely with people. At times working with people provides opportunity, the benefits of working with people and understanding what motivates individuals has allowed me to develop various skills, developing professionally.

If you want to be an Occupational Hygienist, you’d better get used to: Random working hours. It’s all about working within the operational needs (generally). Not everyone being as passionate about HSEC or OHH as you.

People normally think my job involves: Writing procedures and being a pseudo WorkCover officer.

The best thing I’ve been asked to do was: Implement a process resulting in positive change. It could be as simple as a quit smoking campaign, seeing one person take up the offer and improving their lifestyle makes it all worth it.  

The worst thing I’ve been asked to do was: Injury Management. Not the process, but whenever you have to deal with an injured person it’s disappointing in that they have sustained an injury. We never want people to go home in a different state of that which the attending work.

Pete Calder

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