SafeWork NSW launches machine guarding safety blitz

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SafeWork NSW has commenced its machine guarding safety blitz focusing on at-risk businesses in the manufacturing sector in the Sydney metropolitan area.

The safety blitz is part of SafeWork’s Manufacturing Sector Work Health and Safety Plan.

SafeWork Executive Director Tony Williams said injuries in the manufacturing industry were higher than the state average compared to other workplaces in NSW.

“The manufacturing industry is integral to the economy of NSW providing a diverse range of products from food and beverages to wood, metal and plastic products.

“Injuries in manufacturing range from lacerations or open wounds to soft tissue injuries due to trauma.  There have been some serious and, in some cases, fatal but completely avoidable workplaces incidents involving machine guarding.

“It is vital that both businesses and employees are aware of these risks and their responsibilities in managing them.  SafeWork has many tools including free events, workshops and online resources available to help keep workplaces safe.”

During 2018, a Sydney-based baking products manufacturing company was prosecuted by SafeWork and fined more than $150,000 after a worker was seriously injured when her hand became trapped in a machine.

“Working together with industry to prevent injury or death is SafeWork’s number one priority. This worker sustained severe crush and burn injuries to her right hand and was trapped in the machine until co-workers freed her.

“This was an entirely preventable injury. The blitz we are conducting now should serve as a strong reminder to all businesses that worker safety should always be the number one priority,” Mr. Williams said.

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