• Women and the working environment
    Menopause friendly leave, toilets that are fully contained and not cubicle dividers,Kimberley Schofield

    A lot of employees would prefer some extra privacy for their ablutions, rather than a design that makes it easier for the cleaner, or cheaper to build etc etc. Men with prostate problems, folk doing chemo, particularly those with bowel cancer.
  • Restraint of Building Contents
    White Island/Whakaari has been privately owned by the Buttle family since 1936 and in 2008 they established Whakaari Management Ltd. WML was fined $1.045m and ordered to pay $5m in reparations.Catrin Owen

    So if your business leases it's premises/building etc,expect your Landlord to start taking more of an interest in what you are doing
  • Worker Productivity

    Matt, the Chinese Government pumps a huge amount in subsidies to turn some of our raw logs into re-exported "higher" value products, China’s processors also benefit from being larger and having fewer environmental restrictions such as the chemicals they use and how they dispose of them. It’s also less costly to ship logs than higher value products that would require more care to prevent damage.
    Another timber processing facility would be helpful for local log sales, (yes Betty we do sell locally if demand is there)

    4. Invest in technology and production capacity. Any repetitive task can be automated, whether it be filling in a form or moving an object from point A to point B.Matthew Bennett
    Yes, that's true, there's a former client of mine in Christchurch that builds robotic assembly lines for the whiteware giants of the world, their lines can be found in North America, South America, China, Europe.

    As far as moving objects from A-B goes, in 1978 a materials handling company I worked for at that time could automate it's forklifts and materials handling order pickers etc to pick and place items in a warehouse. If your A-B means inter plant, inter city movements then I fear you may have swallowed too much of Electric Jesus's cool aid, according to Mr Musk, self driving cars and his Electric Semi are always about 18 months away from production quantities.
  • Secondary containment with regards to chemicals attached to testing equipment and stored on bences
    We also have a 20 liter jerry cans with solutions with the potential of leaking due to the tap on the side not at the top. Changing them to be at the top is not practical due to the weight of the container and the frequency of use.
    You can get tipping trolleys to store these in Sandra, the trolley tilts to allow the contents of a 20Lt container to be decanted off and the container to be stored upright otherwise, or you could look at "bunded decanting stands"

    We have discussed fire/electrical risk, and we also had incidents where the area had to be locked out due to breakage. I do not know if all the electrical cords/equipment underneath benches have RCDs fitted.Sandra Nieuwoudt
    RCDs might not be the best solution to protect leads under benches, perhaps look into the fitting of Arc Detection Devices to protect the outlets supplying these.
  • Restraint of Building Contents
    With the charging of the owners of White Island by WorkSafe, it was inevitable that Landlords/Building Owners would take more of an interest in the activities of their tenants. During the Christchurch seismic events a friend of mine had a large, heavy, old pedestal drill topple and crush a guy that was working with him, this chap didn't die, but he was in his seventies and it was touch and go for a bit.

    I am very familiar with your Christchurch labs Sandra, I tested and tagged them up until 2019 when ill health forced me to sell my business and retire. You are correct when you say in your original post that most items are indeed well secured, in fact they made my life a misery having to gain access to the full extent of the lead/IEC lead etc at times.

    You might want to look at what are the safe working loads of tables, benches and shelving, it would not serve a useful purpose if these were to collapse under the extra loading earth quakes impose. Securing very heavy items like your centrifuges or water baths by installing fiddles at the corners of these items to stop them "dancing" off the bench etc they are on.would be fairy simple and low cost.
  • H & S with franchisees
    It depends on the nature of the business Tony, one of Donna's cleaning Zees, cleaning an office building/area on a manufacturing site, is "not in control of their workplace". Typically, this might be a Mom and Pop operation, maybe with an employee or two, frequently an immigrant to NZ and for whom English is a second language.
    So while they are "responsible" for their microcosm of the workplace, they will also be working under the H&S rules for the site and will be expected to follow those first.

    The danger for F/Zors is "over managing/micro managing the day to day operation of a Zee", could see a class action drop on them as a group of Zees seek to prove that the business relationship is that of an employer/employee and as such, they should receive Sick, Statutory and Holiday Pay and all the terms, and conditions that apply to that relationship
  • H & S with franchisees
    Hello Donna, after ten years as a Zee, my wife and I decided to purchase our freedom and go Indi, it was interesting that when I looked at a H&S system for us as an independent business , I found that the one that we had been running under, while it had lots of bells and whistles and at 170 Pages looked impressive, was in the words of an old English mate of mine, all mouth and trousers, a triumph of style over substance- so hence my question, is yours truly fit for purpose? To answer that question objectively, have any of your Zees done Sitewise's prequal evaluation Sitewise Green or something similar, you could well be totally correct that all is fine, but independent confirmation would help "sell the sizzle" to the team .

    To record it in the app - takes but a few minutes. If there was a new hazard on that site, then they would have to do some extra recording.Donna Balle

    Is that always the case, or are there instances where a grumpy old Zee with a beard, starts to try and make this god dam thing work and for whatever reason, can't, gets frustrated and just gets the job done- maybe a blind survey using Survey Monkey might wrinkle out some issues that you aren't aware of.

    Do you have regional meetings where you gather your Zees together to discuss H&S, new products/services, tips and tricks etc? it's unlikely that you will prize the lips apart of the Zees who are struggling with the app, but you might uncover other useful titbits, maybe ones that are proficient users could mentor the less so.
  • H & S with franchisees
    They all subscribe to a H & S reporting app that each franchisee can record site checks, SWMS, JSA, Toolbox meetings, incidents etc.Donna Balle

    What size businesses are your franchisees operating Donna? What sort of age are your Zees? are they comfortable using your app on a mobile phone, or is it another embuggarence that takes as long to complete, as it takes to complete the work they do? Is there a perception that the H&S is some form of spyware peering over their shoulders? Is the H&S system actually fit for purpose?
  • H & S with franchisees
    They all subscribe to a H & S reporting app that each franchisee can record site checks, SWMS, JSA, Toolbox meetings, incidents etc.Donna Balle

    Hello Donna, i operated a franchise business for ten years, the Division that i operated in, had developed a very extensive H&S system. While supposedly developed in consultation with Franchisees and Franchisors in the Divisional Manager's state- it was very top driven, is that the case with your system?

    Compliance with the H&S manual etc was a part of each franchisee's annual compliance audit, fail it and you could be issued with a breach of contract notice, removed once your franchise was back in compliance, worst case your contract could be terminated.

    The system was very comprehensive and seemed to impress the hell out of all the corporate clients that I gained. Small one man bands etc were less than enthused about signing our SWMS (developed for each client and each site that they worked on) Is some of the compliance variation you describe, due in part to each Franchisee's variation in client type?
  • Forklift Trucks, F Endorsements and Private Property
    Hello Rodney, just been reading your FL GPG, it seems a bit light on battery electric forklifts, safe charging practices, battery changeovers, ventilation for charging bays etc, is this covered in a dedicated Electric FL GPG?
    The forks on FLs are commonly referred to as Tynes also.
  • Driver competency in work vehicles
    As the WorkSafe article says, the trailer's locking handle was not engaged and the safety chain was not attached - two simple safety features that many would consider just "common sense" but unless someone has been taught about these things (either from their company/trainer or their parents/family/etc.) they can be completely unknown to someone who has never hitched a trailer.MattD2

    This can be extended to changing a wheel Matt, if the one on one corner of a vehicle goes a bit square on it's bottom. Once upon a time, in a far and distant land, Dads were (a) around and (b) did small maintenance tasks on the family car and house. Children learned by watching, asking and assisting him (in the main). Now that basic level of do-ability can't be assumed and commonsense isn't at all common.

    Hello Muhammad, does the check list that you use draw attention to the fact that two different sizes of ball and hitch may be encountered on trailers in New Zealand?

    In a rule change a number of years back the Government introduced the 50mm towball, in line with the European regulations. About 95% of towballs now sold are 1 7/8” diameter, and the remainder are 50mm diameter. 1 7/8” is the most common towball size used on vehicles in NZ, while 50mm is standard in Europe. There is not a lot of difference between the two sizes – a whole 2.375mm, to be exact!

    This has brought about a lot of confusion as while a 1 7/8″ coupling will not fit on a 50mm towball, the 1 7/8″ towball fits into the 50mm trailer coupling easily but is a loose fit, which is very dangerous and must not be done.
  • Working at Height
    For about 25 years I owned a pole house high on the Eastern slopes of Lyttelton, built in the 1970's it had a balcony across the front and down one side to the front door. Usual post and three broad railings, easy for small children to climb.

    For each new child visitor, family, friends of either our daughter or son, the following safety briefing was delivered- The child was taken to the highest point, given a raw egg, told to tap it, tap their head, asked if it felt about as hard, and then told to drop the egg and watch what happened.........No child ever climbed on the railings.
  • You are the new CE of WorkSafe. What would you do first?
    It's interesting to contrast WS and Maritime NZ Alan, the latter seem to have a laser focus on bringing prosecutions successfully.
  • Competent person.
    Back in the day Gail (1992), when I made the move from working as a Service Technician maintaining and repairing battery electric forklifts and materials handling equipment, to setting up and managing a green fields plastic sheet extrusion and recycling company, I set up and ran my own "in house" forklift certification program.

    There was/is a Code Of Practice For Forklift Training Providers, there used to be lots of resources on the (then) Dept Of Labour website, and I had the resources gained from a number of manufacturer's courses and info- I did this because i had a certain amount of prior knowledge, a lot of time, limited financial resources and not a lot of people to train/maintain their skills.

    So long answer short, yes you could, but these days, I'd agree with Andy above, the externally sourced program has the benefit of your operators gaining an "F" endorsement, enabling them to drive on public roads (the definition of "public road might frighten you)
  • You are the new CE of WorkSafe. What would you do first?
    Don't take the role on unless you get sufficient financial resources to do it properly, from the get go, WS has suffered from under funding. Beyond that, all the posters make valid points.

    In any role I've held, listening to,and working along side the troops has always been the way to separate MD/Directors wishful thinking from actual reality.
  • RCD & Test and Tag
    I was Rob, my wife and I were the first Jim's Test & Tag franchisees in Christchurch back in 2009, we operated under the JTT banner for the ten year contract we had with them, and then ran our business as an indi operation, At that point we expanded into Thermal Imaging along with being a test & tag service provider, I was also a contract Test & Tag Trainer for a couple of years.

    My intro to T&T occurred when i took over managing a plastic recycling plant with a HQ in Aussie, I'd only had my butt in the chair for a week or so when i got a call from their Sydney based H&S manager asking me where my Test & Tag results were, fobbed him off with the newbie speech. Duly asked the Office Manager and she looked at me blankly and suggested calling the Electricians that handled our plant's break downs, boss there said 'mate if you want to know when we last tagged your stuff, get off the phone and have a look at our tags, or go back through our invoices"- couldn't see either of these options calming the bloke in Sydney down, so I wound up breaking out my test gear and brought some tags and a log book.

    Few years down the track and both me and "Mrs Jim", as she became affectionately known, needed jobs and we decided that after fifteen years of running businesses for others, we should do something for ourselves, Test & Tag ticked a number boxes (LOL) We wound up having to sell up when I was diagnosed with terminal rust in 2019.
  • RCD & Test and Tag
    Funnily enough, we went through their manufacturing plant every six months, Aussie owned company, so H&S/test & tag/PPE stitched into their DNA. Yes there are specific requirements in the HSWA for importers/suppliers of equipment, but from experience, largely ignored by many, especially someone on their computer searching Temu or Aliexpress etc who sees what they perceive as a "bargain".

    Take portable RCDs as an example, the HPM little orange RCD box sold in NZ complies with our electrical requirements for these items to contain a Type A RCD, these can cope with AC that has (possibly) a DC component, so cheap RCD boxes from Aussie or Asia won't have the correct RCD to cope with our situation. The New Zealand Regulator requires Type A's because we have the High Voltage DC link for the grid from Benmore to Haywards, and the theory is remnants of this could be present in the reconverted AC from Haywards on.

    The Fire Evacuation regulations also impose a responsibility to maintain electrical appliances in a safe condition
  • RCD & Test and Tag
    In your electrical safety model Rob, how do you detect the item that your managing director saw in the US or China at a trade show and thought "gee that would be a useful thing for the troops to use", brought one (or more home) cut off the plug the item's maker fitted to it and replaced it with an A/NZ plug? The item in question is rated at 110V.****

    The popular assumption with Electrical Safety is that it's wholly and solely concerned with stopping an individual getting zapped, lethally or otherwise. That is a part of it, but it is just as much concerned with a dodgy item not causing an issue with the electrical installation or the grid in the event of a major issue. So it's detecting things that could cause a fire, are missing guards and safety features, aren't compliant with NZ electrical requirements

    **** Have encountered this with a steel reinforcing manufacturer who brought in a bunch of benders and cutters, also struck something that might be a little more in your comfort zone. An office for a US based equipment maker that used computer equipment sent to them from the US parent office, these items all had 110V IEC leads that they were connecting via a travel adaptor. This is a bad thing, but what was worse, a Registered Electrician had fitted pass tags to these. So two issues, wrongly rated lead, connected with a non compliant plug- potential risk of catching fire.

    In the case of the benders, sorry these don't comply, with the computer equipment, the issue was the leads/plugs, so the competent fix was to replace all the 110V IEC leads with 240V ones (after confirming that the item it was connecting was rated at 110-240V (NZ nominal voltage 230V so good to go with suitable lead)
  • RCD & Test and Tag
    My take, FWIW, Electrical Appliance Safety is a tripod, supplying appliances via a "regularly tested RCD" type A is one leg, Competent test & tag of appliances should confirm that tagged appliances comply with NZ Electrical Safety requirements and are "safe" to use at that point is the second leg, regular "documented" user checks are the third leg.

    The legal obligation to do "something" is created by Regulation 15 of the Electrical (Safety) Regulations:
    15 Using works, installations, fittings, appliances, and associated equipment

    (1) A person who owns or operates works, installations, fittings, or appliances must not use, and must
    not allow any other person to use, the works, installations, fittings, or appliances if the works,
    installations, fittings, or appliances are electrically unsafe. .

    Regulation 26 describes some ways that this obligation can be discharged by the person responsible for an electrical installation, or hired or rental equipment,

    26 When fittings and appliances in use deemed to be electrically safe

    (1)This regulation applies to a fitting or appliance, other than an electrical medical device, that is in
    use, or available for use,—
    (a) by an employee or contractor of the owner of the fitting or appliance; or
    (b) by a hirer or lessee under a hire or lease agreement with the owner of the fitting or appliance; or
    (c) by the occupier of premises that are rented or leased from the owner of the fitting or appliance.

    I would suggest reading the whole of Reg 26, and not just extracting the portions of it that suit your position.
  • RCD & Test and Tag
    On the subject of switchboard RCDs, Daylight Saving starts this weekend,along with testing that your smoke alarms are working, checking that your RCDs protecting outlets will trip when you push their test buttons falls into the good idea category.

    This "test" won't tell you if it's tripping within the correct time limit, but if you plug a light into the outlet each tripped RCD is protecting, it will give you an indication that it is functional.

    Why "test trip" RCDs? Because these items have power on contacts, there can be a galvanic reaction that causes these contacts to stick to each other and not disconnect cleanly/or at all, if the RCD is tripped, either by test or a current leakage issue