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Date PostedFebruary 18, 2014

White Card News: Worker Fall from Scaffolding results in Fatality

We’ve had a tragic start to the New Year after a worker on a construction site in Sydney died after falling from a scaffold on a building site.

The tragic incident took place at a site in Bangaroo, central Sydney where emergency crews were called to the scene around 8:30am in the morning.

Emergency personnel were told that the worker had been engaging in work on a scaffold when he fell approximately 30 metres.

While waiting for emergency crews to arrive the man’s co-workers performed CPR in efforts to revive the fallen worker but unfortunately he was pronounced dead shortly after paramedics arrived.

Work on the site grinded to a halt following the disturbing incident and police as well as WorkCover NSW investigations are ongoing.

Reports claimed the worker was a general labourer who had been engaged in general construction work at the time of the fall.

The CFMEU was quick to criticise the company responsible for the site, Lend Lease saying that they did not provide the 30year old worker with sufficient supervision.

There are very little details on the incident at the moment but the company says that all control measures were in place for working from heights and that emergency response procedures were also in place.

The incident is a harsh reminder of the need for not only the appropriate supervision of workers but adequate training as well.

In my opinion, safety training in an industry as high-risk as construction is the most important training that a worker can undergo. Employers must ensure that workers undergo safety training and are appropriately trained for the work they will undertake, in this case work from a scaffold.

Obviously the first type of training that workers in the construction industry must undergo is White Card training. This training is general construction industry induction training and teaches all workers, regardless of their trade or experience, how to safely work on a construction site.

The second type of training that all construction workers must undergo is Site Specific training to familiarise them with the hazards associated with work on their specific site and the control measures and procedures implemented by site controllers to deal with them.

Additionally, employers have a responsibility to ensure that workers have the knowledge and sufficient experience to undergo the specific tasks they are appointed. For example workers who will be engaging in general construction work from a scaffold must be trained on work from heights and how to work safely from a scaffold, in addition to receiving White Card and Site Specific training. While White Card training does cover the topic of Work from Heights, it is a broad subject and needs to be addressed more thoroughly by employers.


Steven Asnicar is regarded as a leader across many fields of industry. In particular, his specialisation across the health, infrastructure, construction, resource and utility sectors has seen him successfully change the dynamics of these industries through the introduction of new strategic, marketing, training and technical frameworks. Steven works closely with industry peak bodies such as Safework Australia, Australian Logistics Council, National Advisory for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment (NATESE) and the Council of Australian Governments in the development of new delivery standards and industry specific programs.

Posted in General Construction, White Card, White Card Construction Site Safety Articles Tagged with: , , , ,


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