WorkSafe inspection campaign takes look at tilt-up construction

06 October, 2009

WorkSafe will begin an inspection campaign soon to look at safety standards in the tilt-up construction industry.

WorkSafe WA Commissioner Nina Lyhne said the campaign would focus on raising awareness of the safety risks and ensuring that employers had the information required to comply with the laws.

“Inspectors will look at the known risk areas, and they will be paying special attention to a couple of areas in particular,” Lyhne said.

“Tilt-up construction is recognised as a high-risk industry and, as a result, specific regulations have been put into place to regulate it.  It is also covered by its own code of practice.

“Tilt-up is a specialist area, and training is absolutely vital.  During this campaign, inspectors will be checking that everyone involved in the tilt-up construction process has undergone specific training.

“WorkSafe has successfully prosecuted two companies this year for failing to ensure workers had adequate training.

“Workers on construction sites in WA must also hold a Construction Induction Card – commonly known as the “blue card” – or an approved interstate equivalent, and inspectors will be checking that workers hold one of these cards.

“The other area on which inspectors will concentrate is the new regulations that require construction sites to develop safe work method statements - also known as Job Safety Analyses or JSAs – for all high-risk construction work.

“These regulations were introduced last year, so WorkSafe inspectors expect employers to be fully aware of them and have appropriate systems in place.”

The campaign began on October 1 and will continue throughout October and November across the State.

Inspectors will be working to a checklist, which also includes looking at WorkSafe’s operational priority areas including manual handling, electricity, working at heights and slips, trips and falls.

“The construction industry has been contacted to make it aware of the inspection campaign and to let members know what will occur when an inspector visits,” Lyhne said.

“These inspection campaigns aim to provide employers with information on how to comply with occupational safety and health laws.  Inspectors will take enforcement action if necessary.

“We firmly believe that raising awareness with proactive campaigns is the best way in which to lessen the risk of work-related illness and injury.”