WorkSafe calls for safe procedures when working in remote areas

This announcement is for: 
Employee / workerEmployer

WorkSafe has called on employers and workers to consider all the precautions they should take when work is being undertaken in remote areas.

Workers who regularly travel to remote areas of the State include tour operators and workers involved in supervising various recreational activities, mining workers such as prospectors and geologists, truck drivers and some farmers.

Acting WorkSafe Commissioner Sally North said it was important to keep in mind that both employers and workers had responsibilities for health and safety when working in remote areas.

“While anyone who travels to the outback needs to consider safety when deciding what to take with them, we would particularly like to remind both employers and workers that they have responsibilities under workplace health and safety laws,” Ms North said.

Much of WA is remote with reduced access to regular communications, emergency assistance and medical aid, so employers need to have assessed the risks and must equip workers with what is required to lessen the risks.

Work vehicle breakdowns can leave workers stranded in remote areas, so vehicles should be suitable for the tasks being undertaken and be well maintained and equipped with spare parts and recovery equipment.

A reliable means of communication or an alert system is also an absolute must for safety. Workers should be supplied with equipment such as a satellite phone, GPS tracker, personal locator beacon or EPIRB, as well as a communication plan including regular check-ins.

Adequate training and instruction including the potential hazards, risks and control measures should be provided to workers.

Current weather conditions, including fire risks or fire events, should also be regularly reviewed before, and where practicable during, travel.

“Anyone who travels to WA’s remote areas, whether they do so for work or for recreation, needs to be aware of the risks involved,” Ms North said.

“Many of these risks can be life-threatening, so it’s crucial that everyone is aware of them and what they need to do to reduce or eliminate them.”

Media Contact: Caroline De Vaney, 6251 2363 or 0408 927563 (media queries only).

Follow @WorkSafeWA on Twitter (X)

Media release
25 Jan 2024

Last modified: