VIC: Farmer Fined $80,000

Reported by Admin | 31 Mar, 2012

A vegetable grower company has been fined $80,000 after a woman was run-over by a truck reversing from a machinery shed at a farm in Werribee South in 2008. A man who ran a labour hire company which supplied workers to the property was also fined $15,000. WorkSafe’s Director of Operations, Lisa Sturzenegger, said the penalties …

VIC: Crane Accident at School

Reported by Admin | 31 Mar, 2012

WorkSafe Victoria is investigating an incident where a crane toppled over at a school in Melbourne’s north-east on Wednesday. The crane was installing a section of a demountable classroom. About 800 students were in the yard when the accident happened during recess. Principal Trish Horner said the section was the first piece of the school’s …

VIC: Workers Protest Against Government’s Compensation Cuts

Reported by Admin | 30 Mar, 2012

Following the State Government’s planned cuts to the Workcover fund, about 300 union members yesterday marched on the Victorian Parliament in protest. The Baillieu Government announced last year it would decrease the funds surplus by $472 million. Unions and the State Opposition say the move will mean there is less money available for injured workers. …

VIC: Timber Company has Fine Increased on Appeal

Reported by Admin | 30 Mar, 2012

A forestry company had its fine for workplace safety breaches nearly doubled after the Prosecution appealed against the original fine in the County Court this morning. The company was convicted and fined $230,000 after being initially fined $120,000 by a magistrate in November 2010. Costs of $20,000 were awarded against the company. A 35-year-old female died …

WorkCover NSW to conduct free asbestos webinar

Reported by Haydee | 30 Mar, 2012

A free asbestos safety webinar will be conducted by WorkCover NSW next week to assist businesses and workers in understanding recent changes in work health and safety laws for working with asbestos. The Asbestos Removal and Demolition Requirements webinar is part of WorkCover’s efforts to support NSW business, industry and workers adjust to the new …

Unions ban work on asbestos-contaminated site

Reported by Haydee | 30 Mar, 2012

Unions have decided to ban work at a factory site in Sydney’s west which is allegedly riddled with asbestos. AAP reports that German firm Remondis has suggested creating a waste treatment plant on the site at Camellia, near Parramatta. Nonetheless, Unions NSW voted last night for an interim green ban on work on the site. …

Cth: Legislation to Create New Building Inspectorate

Reported by Admin | 29 Mar, 2012

Following the passing of new laws in the Senate on March 20, a new national inspectorate will be created for the building and construction industry. The Office of the Fair Work Building Industry Inspectorate will replace the Office of the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC). The bill is known as the Building and Construction Industry Improvement …

Master Builders to launch new workplace safety program

Reported by Haydee | 29 Mar, 2012

Master Builders Association (MBA) will launch a new program – the Safety Observations and Conversations Program which is aimed at increasing safety awareness at work sites. MBA ACT executive director, John Miller said that the new initiative will be launched next month. “This program has been in development for many months and recent tragic events …

Fair Work Australia: No to urine drug testing

Reported by Haydee | 29 Mar, 2012

Workers at a New South Wales company will not be required to submit urine sample for drug test, after Fair Work Australia ruled that making employees submit to urine tests for drug use is “unjust and unreasonable.” ABC News reports that the arbitrator ruled in favour of unions who represented workers from the state-owned energy …

New safety plug for gas cylinders

Reported by Haydee | 29 Mar, 2012

Gas explosions have become the cause of some recent injuries and deaths in Australia. In January 2012, a gas bottle explosion almost killed a Newcastle man. A young Darwin tradie was killed in December 2011 when a gas cylinder exploded inside his van. Incidents caused by gas leak and explosions have prompted Heldon Products Australia …

ACT: WorkSafe Closes Down Construction Sites

Reported by Admin | 28 Mar, 2012

Worksafe ACT has closed down two work sites operated by a Canberra civil construction company. A construction site in Turner was closed on Saturday after a man was allegedly electrically shocked while working at the site. Another site in Molonglo was also declared unsafe by Worksafe ACT and closed on Tuesday because of safety concerns. …

TAS: Building Company Fined After Worker’s Leg Amputated

Reported by Admin | 28 Mar, 2012

A Tasmanian building supply company has been fined $60,000 over a workplace accident in which a man lost his leg in 2010. The worker was trapped in a crusher at the company’s New Town brickworks and had to have his leg amputated. The company pleaded guilty in the Hobart Magistrates Court to failing to ensure …

NSW: Government Lists Examples of Excessive WorkCover Payouts

Reported by Admin | 27 Mar, 2012

Further to our story today on the proposed overhaul of the state’s workers compensation scheme, the NSW Finance Minister Greg Pearce has listed examples of compensation which he argues support the case for reform. A worker who claimed tinnitus because of excess use of her Blackberry phone has received $1.2 million in workers compensation over five …

Construction worker killed in scaffolding fall

Reported by Haydee | 27 Mar, 2012

A Green Valley construction worker died after falling from scaffolding in Sydney’s CBD. According to police reports, the 54-year-old worker fell at a building site on the corner of Pitt Street and Campbell Street in Haymarket before 8am (AEDT) today. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the worker was already dead when rescuers arrived. WorkCover …

VIC: Alert Advising on Storage of Gas Cylinders in Vehicles

Reported by Admin | 27 Mar, 2012

WorkSafe Victoria has issued a safety alert concerning the risk of explosion from leaking portable flammable gas cylinders inside work vehicles. Workers have died or sustained serious injuries after their work vehicles exploded. These explosions occurred when gas from leaking portable gas cylinders ignited inside the vehicles. In many cases, the ignition source was the …

Augusta Zadow Scholarships open for applications

Reported by Haydee | 27 Mar, 2012

Augusta Zadow. Photo: SafeWork SA Applications for the 2012 ‘Augusta Zadow’ Scholarships which recognise outstanding workplace health and safety initiatives for South Australian women are now open. According to Industrial Relations Minister, Russell Wortley, two scholarships valued at up to $10,000 each is awarded every year to assist with Occupational Health and Safety improvements undertaken …

Former RAAF firies call to report health cases

Reported by Haydee | 27 Mar, 2012

Former firefighters Doug Bower, Pat Mildren and Noel Lee. Photo: Townsville Bulletin Former RAAF firefighters who have been diagnosed with cancer and other associated health problems believe that their illness was caused by years of burning dangerous chemicals in training activities. The group, led by RAAF Association Townsville branch president Pat Mildren are calling on …

NSW: Government Announces Overhaul of WorkCover Compensation

Reported by Admin | 27 Mar, 2012

Yesterday New South Wales Premier Barry O’Farrell announced that changes must be made to the state’s WorkCover compensation scheme because of massive cost blowouts. The proposed reforms are expected to be released in a month. A recently released audit of the WorkCover Scheme reveals that the scheme will be in deficit by more than $4 billion by …

Public Comment Invited on Draft Australian Work Health and Safety Strategy 2012-2022

Reported by Angela | 27 Mar, 2012

  Safe Work Australia is developing the Australian Work Health & Safety Strategy 2012-2022 to provide a national framework for support and change at the workplace level. This draft document is now available for public comment. Following a series of 11 workshops seeking community consultation throughout 2011, this draft document has now been developed to …

QLD: Safety Alert for Securing Loading Ramps for Mobile Plant

Reported by Admin | 26 Mar, 2012

Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ) has issued a safety alert to highlight the risks associated with not effectively securing loading ramps for mobile plant. The alert follows an incident in October 2011 in which a worker was killed after being crushed by a forklift that toppled while being unloaded from a trailer. In the …

VIC: Study Reveals High Risk of Worker Diabetes

Reported by Admin | 26 Mar, 2012

A WorkSafe Victoria study of 6898 workers in Hobsons Bay reveals that more than a third are at a high risk of type 2 diabetes. The study showed 34 per cent across Hobsons Bay were at high risk of developing the life-threatening disease. The state average was 23.3 per cent. Diabetes is a chronic condition where not …