WorkSafe has urged the sporting community to improve workplace safety at the launch of the 2010 Victorian Country Football League season in Melbourne yesterday.
WorkSafe Acting Executive Director Stan Krpan said the high number of deaths and injuries in the State shows the need for improved community involvement in workplace injury prevention.
“Of the 29 Victorians who died at work since this day last year, 19 were in regional Victoria,” he said.
“Three of those deaths were in the past week, and only yesterday a man was badly hurt when a tractor tipped-over near Geelong.
This week, a father and son were electrocuted while installing a windmill. Both were leading lights in their western-Victorian community
“While this week’s double fatality with three others hurt in western Victoria were horrific, the impact of similar incidents is shared by many other country clubs and communities.”
According to Mr Krpan, the club and league setup can contribute in helping pick up the pieces once disaster struck.
“But why shouldn’t it be helping to reduce the need for that support?
“Sadly, incidents like the ones we deal with are only the tip of the iceberg.
“WorkSafe has a role to provide information and enforce the law, but the broad community need is for people to speak up, get involved, perhaps challenge the habits of a lifetime and in some cases make some hard calls.
“If you’re doing that, you’ll be investing in your community and your club and ensuring everyone has the opportunity to come along on game day,” Mr Krpan said.
“It’s a form of insurance which will pay dividends at the family, club, community and business level.”
WorkSafe has been a naming rights sponsor of the Victorian Country Football League since 2002 and affiliated netball clubs since 2005. It gives the safety watchdog with repeat, direct access to an enormous supporter base which over two million match attendees and 80,000 players each year.