The number of workers entering the construction sector increases each year which can be problematic when you consider that these new workers are completely unaware and untrained about the safety hazards present on a construction site and are completely oblivious as to how to avoid being injured or causing injury related to these hazards.
Recently the issue of inexperienced workers was addressed by a number of media reports which indicated that workers under the age of 25 are responsible for one fifth of all work related injuries in Australia.
A recent report entitled “Work Related injuries experienced by young workers 2009-2010” highlighted the fact that the injury rate was highest amongst young workers. The report showed that the injury rate per 1000 workers was 18 per cent higher for young workers than it was for more mature and experienced ones.
The problem arises from the fact that often young people get caught up with excitement when they get their first job and they may not be aware of the importance of understanding hazards and safety procedures. They are also more likely to not ask questions because of initial shyness which can result in them making mistakes when it comes to safety.
There is a noticeably higher rate of injury for young people in the workplace and in the construction industry in particular which makes the need for safety training even greater.
It is also interesting to note that most young workers do not even apply for workers compensation after they are injured because they believed the injury was minor and did not warrant a claim. It is also interesting that a quarter of all injuries suffered by young workers are in fact so called “minor” injuries affecting hands, fingers and thumbs.
It is quite obvious why White Card Training is compulsory across Australia for anyone wishing to enter into a career in the construction industry as well as those just engaged in temporary or part time work, any one setting foot on a building site must be in possession of their White Card, which can be obtained by completing their online White Card training.
The law requires any worker in the construction industry to be in possession of their White Card. It is lucky that this certificate is easy and affordable to obtain. But most importantly it equips young workers with the knowledge of how to stay safe while engaging in construction activities on a hazard rich building site.
While employers have a responsibility to ensure that workers are provided with a safe work environment and safe system of work, employees also carry a substantial amount of the responsibility, one of which is undertaking White Card training and adhering to the safety principles it teaches.
Workers also have a responsibility to not endanger their own lives or the lives of their co-workers however in order to learn how to do this they must first undergo basic construction site safety training, this is in the form of the White Card.
For young, inexperienced workers who may feel daunted by the idea of construction hazards the White Card is a comprehensive, informative and convenient way of becoming familiar with construction site safety, in addition to be a mandatory requirement according to state law.