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Govt 'ignored' insulation program safety concerns: MEA

13 August, 2013

Master Electricians Australia has welcomed the coalition's promise to establish a full judicial inquiry into the federal government's Home Insulation Program (HIP), if the party were elected.

Malcolm Richards, Master Electricians Australia chief executive officer said the recently released Queensland Coroner's report found warnings to the government raising urgent safety concerns by industry had been ignored.

"The Coroner's report has found that the lives of four young tradesmen lost under the HIP could have been avoided," Richards said.

"The scheme was rolled out hastily without proper planning around safety, or proper consultation with industry.

"It has now come to light that there are many more unanswered questions as to what information had been in letters sent to the prime minister.

"Master Electricians Australia would welcome the opportunity of a judicial inquiry, in order to ensure a disaster like this is never repeated."

Richards said he was also pleased Master Electricians' previous recommendation to the initial inquest, to examine the issue of safety switches, had been taken seriously.

"The Queensland State Coroner has recommended that state's government look again at the issue of installing safety switches on every circuit of every home," Richards said.

"We call on every state government to examine the findings of this inquiry and take action to make safety switches compulsory in every home, on every circuit, in the country.

"We need all of our state governments to urgently act on this recommendation to minimise the risk of similar tragedies in the future."

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Peter John | Wednesday, August 14, 2013, 11:36 AM
Not only did they ignore safety warnings, the rush to start the HIP allowed a flood of imported insulation material. A smart Government would of opened negotiations with existing Aussie manufacturers to ramp up their capacity for the HIP thus creating more employment for Aussies on a long term basis. However the Labour party were hell bent on bolstering their relationship with the Greens to hold onto power. Labour also squashed the Commercial Ready scheme for new manaufacturing products/processes in Australia so they could fund Green projects. So one thing is certain is that Labour are absolutley not interested in Jobs for Australians. We should all be united on this front and somehow encourage the ruling party to listen to those who know what we are talking about in the interest of our economic future.
Albert Feather | Wednesday, August 14, 2013, 1:50 PM
Oh how I wish we had an engineer or an electrician running Australia? Like Brazil we would have some real brains in a place that matted, those kids would still be alive. Lawyers have no basic common sense, we always end up with them running things.