High-Risk Work Licences are in the spotlight again after WorkSafe WA discovered another falsified licence.
The safety regulator has warned employers to carefully check High-Risk Work Licences after a licence that had been altered to include classes of high-risk work for which the owner had not been trained was presented to a Perth-based company as part of recruitment process.
“In this latest instance, a licence was presented to a Canning Vale company as part of a recruitment process, and they became suspicious after not being able to confirm that the licence holder held all classes shown on it,” WorkSafe WA Acting Executive Director Chris Kirwin said.
“The company then sent a copy to WorkSafe requesting a check, and upon further investigation, it was found that the licence that had been issued was only for one class of high-risk work, not the three it showed.
“The licence was issued to the person in question, but only for Advanced Scaffolding. Extra classes for Advanced Rigging and Forklift Operation had been added at a later date.
“As is common with these cases the falsification was not very convincing, with the extra licence classes printed in a different size font from the original, so it raised suspicions straight away.
“High-Risk Work Licences are only issued to workers who have been appropriately trained and have the skills to perform high-risk work safely and competently.
“They apply to anyone engaged in work considered to be “high risk”, including scaffolding, dogging and rigging work and the operation of cranes, hoists, pressure equipment and forklifts.
“Our advice to potential employers or anyone in control of a workplace is to satisfy yourself that anyone you are thinking of employing for high-risk work has the experience they claim to have.
“Always sight the original High-Risk Work Licence card – don’t be satisfied with an emailed or texted scan or photo of the licence.
“Anyone who has concerns about a High-Risk Work Licence can verify the details using the WorkSafe licence and registration search located on the Department of Commerce website.
“If the person cannot be found on the licence and registration database or the classes shown differ from the licence that has been presented, please contact WorkSafe so the issue can be followed up.
“Finally, it’s important to note that the cases of fraud in relation to High-Risk Work Licences we have discovered – including this one – have been referred to WA Police.”
Additional information can be obtained by telephoning WorkSafe on 1300 307877 or on the website at www.worksafe.wa.gov.au.