The 12 month construction blitz conducted by SafeWork inspectors in NSW has been hailed as a success following 1258 notices being issued and 186 small businesses receiving rebates.
The blitz was aimed at reducing work from heights.
According to SafeWork NSW Executive Director, Tony Williams 1000 sites were visited, prompted by 9 workplace deaths in the state in 2017. Alot more people were injured on construction sites due to falls from heights.
“Falls from heights is the number one killer on construction sites. We undertook a concentrated education campaign for tradies and provided rebates for small business,”
“Since the start of the blitz, we have given more than $86,000 of rebates to 186 small businesses to help them work safely at heights.
“While inspectors have observed troubling levels of non-compliance, they are working with employers to educate them and taking enforcement action where needed, including issuing on-the-spot fines. Williams explained.
Mr Williams said inspectors issued 1258 notices to stop or improve work processes and 93 on-the-spot fines when the falls risk to workers was imminent or serious, and for repeat offender workplaces.
Since the start of the safety blitz, inspectors say they have seen an improvement of up to 9 per cent in compliance relating to work from height such as scaffolds, formwork, ladders, safety planning documents, site inductions, and toolbox talks. Mr Williams said the construction industry still has a long way to go to secure safety.
“Over the next two years, SafeWork will continue to work on those areas of highest risk in the construction industry. This includes working on roofs, ladders and non-compliant scaffolds, as part of a broader falls from heights action plan SafeWork NSW is releasing today,” Mr. Williams said.
More information on the construction safety blitz and falls from heights action plan can be viewed at www.safework.nsw.gov.