In this article


Personnel safety

In 2021, Imperial implemented initiatives focused on preventing serious injuries associated with lifting, rigging and working around mobile equipment, which is particularly important at our Kearl mining operation. We also continued our focus on our Life Savings Actions Program, designed for employees and contractors to verify safeguards are in place before starting work activities that have higher-risk elements. In 2021, we also revised our Incident Investigation Framework to be consistent with International Oil and Gas Products (IOGP) 621 and incorporated enhanced investigation techniques and learning standards, which included a focus on leadership and human performance.


At Imperial, priority is given to the prevention of fatalities, life-altering injuries and illnesses. We believe this priority and focus has contributed to the reduction of higher-consequence events and injuries over the years and is reflected in our performance tables at the back of this report. 

In 2021, Imperial had a Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) of 0.34 and a Lost Time Incident Rate (LTIR) of 0.02. Our TRIR was higher than we would have liked however, through improved contractor plans, short-service worker action plans and investments in additional mental health resources, our 2022 performance to date has been improved to a TRIR rate of 0.26 through August 2022.

To support strong safety performance, our contractor management systems require service providers to be screened, monitored and continually assessed to ensure they are meeting our stringent health and safety requirements.

Process safety

At Imperial, we recognize that successfully managing process safety protects our people, the community and the environment by properly controlling the hazards inherent to our operations.

Process safety is more than words we write in a procedure or boxes to check on a work permit. It is thoughtful risk management action we must take in the field every day; all integral to the way we design, operate and maintain our facilities. We verify and rigorously manage these safeguards through maintenance, inspection, operations testing, competency demonstrations and emergency preparedness drills.

In 2021, we enhanced our OIMS framework to include new process safety requirements designed to sharpen our focus on process safety risks with higher-consequence potential, while defining the knowledge, competency and execution excellence needed to prevent process safety events.

Our enhanced process safety guidelines and expectations are focused on leadership, scenario management, human performance principles, critical task execution and learning from experience, all designed to help achieve a step change in process safety performance.

Unplanned release prevention

Process safety is not only vital for driving us closer to a workplace where no one gets hurt, but it is also critical for reducing unplanned releases and supporting our aim of zero spills. (27) Imperial designs and operates facilities with the objective of preventing unplanned releases from entering the environment and causing adverse effects. In addition, our spill prevention program establishes procedures for inspecting and maintaining equipment, training operators and conducting practice drills.

Product safety

Throughout the value chain we are focused on product safety, product stewardship, regulatory compliance and we collaborate with industry professionals, regulators and policy makers to ensure the best available science informs industry product safety policy. This work includes communicating with customers and addressing regulatory developments.

Imperial’s Product Safety Policy is consistent with external product safety standards, including those codified in Responsible Care®, an initiative of the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada. Our products, including chemicals, lubricants, and fuels, meet or exceed applicable regulations, standards and guidelines including:

  • U.N. Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS).
  •  U.N. Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM).

Our primary communication tool is our Product Stewardship Information Management System (PSIMS), which provides information on the safe handling, transport, use and disposal of our products via safety data sheets.

Workplace security

Imperial’s robust security measures are designed to protect our personnel and facilities from operational threats and cybersecurity attacks. Our security programs are risk-based, flexible and responsive to the diverse locations where we do business.

Proactive security actions are enabled by effective processes and systems that collect, monitor and evaluate potential security intelligence and threats. We regularly participate in government 
and industry forums to enhance our knowledge, skills and technical security applications, and have ongoing awareness and training programs including cybersecurity awareness to reinforce safe behaviours with our workforce.


As cybersecurity risks continue to evolve, we must protect our business against cyber-related business disruptions and threats that can potentially affect our data, facilities and operations. Our defensive preparedness includes multi-layered technological capabilities for prevention and detection of cybersecurity disruptions. Awareness remains one of our best defences, and cybersecurity education is a priority for our employees. In addition to annual employee training, we conduct regular cybersecurity testing of our workforce. In 2021, all of our employees completed their annual cybersecurity training to help them identify and respond to potential cybersecurity risks and to reinforce behaviours. 

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