Albany construction campaign reveals generally good standards

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A WorkSafe inspection program of construction sites in the Albany area has revealed generally good standards in occupational safety and health management.

WorkSafe inspectors conducted 19 inspections in the Albany area, including Albany itself, Williams, Kojonup, Mount Barker and Denmark over the week commencing December 13, 2010.

WorkSafe Director Chris Kirwin said today the inspection program did find some areas of concern, but the standards of safety on building sites were good.

“The inspectors who conducted the Albany program were generally satisfied with the level of compliance with occupational safety and health laws on construction sites in the Albany area,” Mr Kirwin said.

“Inspectors issued a total of seven improvement notices and six prohibition notices in the course of the 19 inspections, with some areas of continuing concern noted.

“Three of the improvement notices and one of the prohibition notices issued involved electrical equipment on construction sites.

“The three improvement notices were issued to construction sites with electrical installations not in accordance with the relevant Australian Standard covering testing and tagging of electrical equipment.

“The prohibition notice involved damaged electrical leads, a reminder that it is important that electrical equipment is kept in a good state of repair.

“Whenever inspection programs are undertaken in the construction sector, the same problems always seem to crop up, electricity in particular.

“It is crucial that portable electrical equipment on construction sites is tested regularly and tagged as being safe to operate – incidents involving electricity are often serious and sometimes fatal.”

The program involved inspectors conducting general inspections of construction sites, but also concentrating on some specific areas.

They conducted High Risk Work licence checks on 17 individuals at five construction sites, and all were found to hold the required updated licences.

Inspectors also issued notices relating to edge protection, scaffolding, access and egress, flashback arrestors and duties of employees.

“The Albany campaign was one of a series of similar campaigns in regional areas of the State undertaken over the past three years that have resulted in positive feedback from WorkSafe inspectors, but have also found continuing areas of concern,” Mr Kirwin said.

“The program of regional inspection campaigns is all about increasing awareness of workplace safety in the regions, but inspectors do issue notices where they discover breaches of the laws.”

Further information on construction safety can be obtained by telephoning WorkSafe on 1300 307877 or on the website at www.worksafe.wa.gov.au.


Media contact:  Caroline De Vaney 9327 8744 or 0408 927563 (media enquiries only).

WorkSafe
Media release
10 Feb 2011

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