NZ Roadworkers Reflect on Health and Safety

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In an effort to highlight health and safety in the road construction industry, roading contractors in New Zealand temporarily downed tools for the “Pause for Health and Safety Day” initiative, aimed at refocusing on creating safer work environments.

In February there had been 4 deaths at road construction sites which prompted the pause, the NZ Transport Agency said.

The “Pause for Health and Safety Day” involved all agency staff and industry workers stopping work from 8am to 12pm to focus on creating safer working environments and eradicating workplace accidents.

Although health and safety is the industry’s top priority and strict policies do exist to ensure safety, it is important to never become complacent. Downing tools is one way to refocus people on health and safety.

Source: https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12220245

Global Construction Skills Shortage

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A recent appeal from the peak industry body, The Housing Industry Association (HIA), highlighted a looming skills shortage in the construction sector.

The HIA said further support was needed to help find construction industry talent from overseas.

According to The HIA’s Harley Dale, it is being made harder to qualify to bring in skilled labour from overseas, calling for a separate contractor visa that could be used to bring workers into Australia that are in short supply.

Dale said many small businesses involved in home building are already battling to recruit and train tradies and its become more expensive.

Man Crushed on Darwin Worksite

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A man has died in a workplace accident in the Northern Territory.

The 30 year old man was crushed to death by machinery at a site in Darwin.

Northern Territory Police said the incident appeared to be a tragic accident but together with NT WorkSafe, they would be investigating.

The 30 year old victim hails from Katherine.

Investigators assessed an excavator loaded into the back of a truck with crime scene tape still around the area.

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-04-29/man-28-dies-killed-dead-worksite-machinery-crushed-darwin/11056408

Prioritise Safety in the Lead up to Christmas- Businesses Warned

Businesses and workers have been reminded to prioritise safety in the lead-up to Christmas, a time of year that is typically marked by higher injury rates.

During this time of the year, people tend to relax and slack off when it comes to safety, this can lead to accidents.

WorkSafe WA issued a reminder to pay particular attention to safety before and after Christmas.

This year 3 WA workers have been killed in workplace accidents and one of those was on a construction site.

Another reason for the rise in incidents around this time is because in many industries, workers and employers can feel pressured to complete projects on time and before the festive season break. WorkSafe reminded people that this cannot come at the expense of safety.

Contact WorkSafe on 1300 307 877 for more or visit their website www.worksafe.wa.gov.au.

Apprentice Dies on Site in Victoria

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The safety of workers, particularly new and young workers should take precedence on a work site and the evidence of what could happen if it doesn’t was brought into the spotlight by an incident that happened at a Melbourne work site recently.

A 20 year old apprentice worker was killed while working inside an open ended tank at a Cranbourne West business. It is believed the man was overcome by fumes while working in the confined space.

WorkSafe Victoria is investigating the incident however this death brings the number of workplace fatalities for the year to 21.

Apprentice workers should be properly trained before being instructed to undertake high risk work such as work in confined spaces or solitary work and should be properly supervised.

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/10/vic-apprentice-dies-confined-space/#.W9RhYPYlE1l

Toolkit Launched to Improve NSW Health and Safety

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To coincide with National Safe Work Month, a new self assessment toolkit has been released in NSW, to improve workplace health and safety in the state.

The toolkit Easy to Do Work Health and Safety will make it simpler for small businesses to comply with their health and safety obligations, according to Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation Matt Kean.

Workplace injuries costs the economy more than $950 million in 2016/17 and the state lost a total of 472,320 weeks in injury during that time.

A survey in 2017 also found that the majority of businesses found health and safety laws to a burden for businesses.With more than 700,000 small businesses in NSW, it’s crucial that they are compliant to WHS laws.

The toolkit provides a free, self-assessment and links to the relevant advice and services and assists small businesses identify practical steps to provide health and safety.

View the Easy to Do Work Health and Safety toolkit at www.safework.nsw.gov.au/easywhs

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/10/new-toolkit-improve-workplace-health-safety-launched/#.W9RgQPYlE1l

These are Australia’s Most Dangerous Industries

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SafeWork Australia has revealed the most dangerous industries in the country so far in 2018.

At the top of the list is the transport, postal services and warehousing industry with 29 fatalities so far, having overtaken the previous most dangerous industry – agriculture, forestry and fishing which recorded 27 deaths this year.

The construction industry which regularly appears in the top 4 most high risk industries in Australia, currently has the third highest number of deaths at 19.

Read more at https://www.news.com.au/finance/business/retail/latest-statistics-reveal-australias-most-dangerous-jobs-for-2018/news-story/2b2f866dbfcdc876c281f66ea553ff74

Brick Wall Collapses on Construction Worker

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Another construction accident has taken place, this time on a construction site south of Brisbane.

The construction worker involved is recovering in hospital after he was crushed when a brick wall fell.

The construction worker, aged in his fifties fell about 2 metres from scaffolding when the brick wall collapsed.

He suffered serious head injuries and was rushed to Princess Alexandra Hospital.

Workplace Health and Safety are investigating the incident that happened at the Capalaba construction site.

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/09/sand-gravel-company-fined-125k-following-apprentices-serious-injury/#.W7IBKvYlE1k

Two Construction Workers Lose Out on $2.2m Lotto Share

Two Sydney construction workers are kicking themselves after missing  out on a share of $2.2 million from a winning lotto ticket. Instead of buying in with their co-workers, the 2 chose to buy lunch instead while the other workers chipped in $10 for a ticket.

The 16 workers who work for Haines Brothers Earthmoving will each get $137,500 after their joint ticket won the jackpot in the Saturday lotto draw, splitting the $2.2 million equally.

Source: https://www.news.com.au/finance/money/wealth/two-workers-miss-out-as-construction-crew-splits-22-million-lotto-syndicate-win/news-story/473ca9726bcca48af09850e7b38c583b

NZ Health and Safety Complacency Rising

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Health and safety compliance is on the decline in New Zealand, according to the regulator in charge of workplace safety.

While the country has made strides in reducing the number of workplace deaths and injuries, there are fears that complacency may be creeping in.

WorkSafe NZ chief executive Nicole Rosie said the real challenge is enduring change which involves a change in culture.

Since WorkSafe was established in New Zealand in 2013 after the Pike River disaster, the number of workplace deaths have been declining but improvement seems to have slowed.

Read why New Zealanders may be becoming complacent about workplace safety at https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/better-business/106355421/complacency-rises-in-workplace-health-and-safety-and-were-all-to-blame