With multiple teams, heavy machinery, castings and concrete works and precarious spaces – Construction sites are busy and fairly dangerous spaces. With proper coordination, consultation and cooperation organisations can ensure the health and safety of all members present on site.
What is Construction Work
Construction work is any work carried out in connection with the construction, alteration, conversion, fitting out, commissioning, renovation, repair, maintenance, refurbishment, demolition, decommissioning or dismantling of a structure, or preparation of a building site.
Due to the nature of risk to life involved in certain industries, the Australian government has been proactive in creating laws and strategies to enable the safe working conditions. The Australian Work Health and Safety Strategy 2012-2022 has identified the construction industry as a priority due to the high number and rate of work-related fatalities and serious injuries.
For a number of years, construction has consistently been among the top few industries with the highest number of serious claims. Since 2006-07, it has had the fifth highest incidence rate of serious claims of all industries. The Strategy aims to reduce the incidence of serious injury by at least 30% nationwide by 2022 and reduce the number of work-related fatalities due to injury by at least 20%.
Since the Strategy launched, Safe Work Australia and all jurisdictions have been working collaboratively with the industry, unions, relevant organisations and the community to reduce traumatic injury fatalities and injuries in the transport industry.
Precautionary Measures on Site
The old adage “Prevention is better than cure”, cannot be ignored when we consider the safety of staff and works on site.
Personal Safety Equipment
Equipping the staff members with personal safety equipment can save the PCBU (Person conducting business or undertaking) a fair amount of heartache. Helmets or hard hats, safety glasses, gloves, safety boots and earmuffs are the basic construction wear if provided to the workers can immediately reduce claims and injuries.
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Depending on the nature of the construction, equipment like safety harnesses, safe cage lifts, safety eyewash, and fireproofing can ensure the work is carried out with minimum problems.
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Safety Officer or Consultant
It is also fairly common, and a norm growing in popularity to hire a safety officer or consultant to guide from workers to the management staff the proper guidelines and processes to ensure the injuries and fatalities can be prevented while working on the site. The safety officer also makes rounds of the site to ensure that staff is adhering to the guidelines.