• Working at Height

    Maybe I could have articulated that better. I would like to see a definition that also considers how we store/stack items at height.
  • Working at Height
    This always works for me.
    "Work where there is the potential to fall from one level to another which increase the risk of injury."MattD2
    (although it could provoke more focus on things falling and not just people).

    As we know, this is only defining the activity. Evaluating the risk requires a lot more thought.
  • HOP vs all incidents are preventable.
    I attended a Human Factors seminar by a chap named Shane Bush in the mid to late noughties who explained that humans are both fallible and predictable.

    In a nutshell, we can predict the sort of environments, pressures and situations where people are more likely to make mistakes, so we should try and fix those and not the person.
  • The definition of risk
    I can't disagree with the definition from a broader sense, but while it may be suitable for inclusion in a dictionary, from a health, safety, wellbeing or environmental perspective, it removes the notion that people will be in the firing line and makes it more about continuity of operations.
  • Fit Testing of Powered Respirators and Clean Space Masks
    Hey Stuart. Best to start with WorkSafe's Fit Testing advice provided in this link.

    I will resist providing any steer on the testing methods as there is sometimes a tendency to get the fit testing and fit checking terminology muddled, and the differences in qualative and quanttive methods.

    I will go out on a limb though and state that any tight-fitting mask will not be effective if the seal is compromised in any way, including the presence of stubble.

    Best to check that any mask purchase meets the requirement of AS/NZS 1716, although other standards are recognised by WorkSafe e.g. NIOSH, EN149, GB2626. Better still, purchase these items through a reputable supplier.
  • Risk perception - new study
    Another question this study poses is whether we would attempt to evaluate risk with such a limited amount of information on the hazard.

    While the questions seem similar, the visualisation of the hazard will vary quite considerably.
    Vehicles will almost always be outdoors while smokers may be indoors (proximity and ventilation).
    The variable in whether a car stuck in traffic or is moving at speed is greater than that of a person sitting smoking or walking around. There's no mention of how many and how often.

    A reminder that we need to get our walking shoes on and see the hazards for ourselves before attempting to define a level of risk.
  • How to ensure / encourage responsible social drinking at work?
    It's a dodgy old topic this one as it straddles a couple of pieces of legislation, one of which is prescriptive (Road Traffic Act) and the other not so much (Health and Safety at Work Act).

    The "problem" is that the HSWA is there to prevent the risk of harm from work activities, whereas the question being asked is how you prevent the risk of breaking other legislation by staying under the limit (I am sure the moral side is that no harm occurs to workers or other road users too).

    While I wouldn't want to be a fun filter, but due to you having the guilty knowledge of problems occurring in the past, I can't see a way of solving this without putting some clear rules or limits in place for social gatherings, and meaningful deterrents as a consequence of not following these expectations.

    If your risk tolerance does cover the possibility of having intoxicated persons on the premises (but not while working), then I would definitely be encouraging lift shares and the use of public transport on drinks day; it could even be a useful PR stunt due to the environmental benefits :wink:
  • How to acknowledge (or even reward) outstanding effort?
    It's a case of horses for courses when it comes to how people want to be acknowledged or rewarded for "above and beyond" behaviour.

    For some people, being thrust into the spotlight in front of their peers is the stuff of nightmares, whereas for others, it is what drives them on (The Muttley effect :lol: ). Sometimes it's better to reward a team rather than an individual.

    At risk of sounding like a stuck record on this topic, the most bought into Reward & Recognition scheme that I have been involved with was one where we allowed the workers themselves to design. You will be surprised by what is classed as a reward and who the recipients of it should be.
  • Ride on and Pedestrian Pallet Jack operation
    I'm conscious that I am going off on a slight tangent here, but I am hoping to hijack the knowledge being passed on in this thread.

    Does anyone have any information on the NZ requirements to inspect tail lifts on vehicles? This would fit under LOLER in the UK, but I can't find an alternative on these shores.
  • Staff and H&S Rep Recognition
    The most successful initiative that I was involved in developing when in the UK was one which recognised staffs positive behaviours and actions by making donations to several local charities each year. Each recognised safe behaviour/action equated to a £1 donation.

    The initiative was practically run with very little H&S Staff involvement and had longevity because the workers were involved at every step of the way, starting with which charities they want to donate to (the "why" behind the choices became a very powerful driver).
  • Workers younger than 15 in construction
    There's a subtle difference between domestic and industrial machinery, and its the use of the latter which the act is attempting to protect the younger person against. Using domestic machinery in a work setting does not make it industrial grade, something the manufacturers and retailers will quickly let you know if things start to breakdown.

    We will always be able to provide an example where there is/should be an exception to the rule, but this tragic death shows why we can't make a rule for exception. Younger adults just don't have the maturity or risk awareness and retain too much curiosity to make the same judgements that we do as mature adults.
  • Is the Safe Use of Machinery Best Practice Guidelines 2014 by Work Safe still relevant
    The guidelines are relevant to workshops of all sizes, and the flowcharts are detailed enough to provide instruction whether you are a designer. manufacturer, importer or user/maintainer.

    The website also provides more specific information for certain types of machinery which do a great job of identifying the hazards and suggested controls (e.g. Circular Saw)

    Obviously only you can provide detail on the environment in which the equipment will be used in.

    Finally, MBIE are currently working on the next set of regulations that will fall out of the Health and Safety at Work Act. The next cab off the ranks will include machinery, although it is looking less likley that the 2022 date for delivery will be missed.
  • Corporate manslaughter - UK example
    Unfortunately Corporate Manslaughter is still a very difficult prosecution to bring in the UK due to the problems trying to find a single "controlling mind" in the medium to large companies, so this acting as a deterrent isn't as clear cut as it may seem.

    I also think that there are very few deterrents that are effective for bosses who are as morally corrupt as these two. Once you are that far gone there is very little hope for a reversal.
  • NEBOSH General Cert vs Diploma in Health and Safety
    The way these qualifications were described to me was that the NEBOSH Gen Cert opens the door to H&S, while the Diploma gives you a big two handed shove into the room :grin:

    My experience is that they supplement each other pretty well, NEBOSH for hazard management and the Diploma for the systems side of things. If time/cost is not an issue then I see no reason not to flow against the usual qualification tide as you will learn something new.
  • Cycling to vs cycling at work
    If there was ever an example of where we as H&S professionals should stay in our lane and concentrate on controlling the risk, not the hazard, then this is it!

    While we can assess the risks associated from travelling this short route by bike, we aren't in the business of fixing holistic hazards associated with travelling by bike on NZ roads.

    If travelling this short route by bike falls inside your risk appetite then there's no reason why it shouldn't go ahead on H&S grounds.
  • Who leads mental health: H&S or HR?
    My black and white (and very blunt) view is that the H&S team lead where harm may be caused by At Work activities, whereas health issues brought to the workplace should be led by HR.
    There is of course a collaborative wellbeing strategy space where both streams meet.

    The pitfalls include a business overestimating the skillset in either team in provide adequate care to individuals. There should be a clear line where issues are handed over to the experts.
  • SSSP - Have we lost our way
    Our expectations on what a SSSP can deliver should reflect the opportunities we have given the contractor to gather information about the specific site.

    All too often they're requested far too early into a project and without the contractor setting foot on site. The best we can hope for in this instance is a very generic and off-the-shelf plan.

    It will also result in the contractor attempting to cover all bases by throwing pretty much every H&S document they own into the SSSP for review.

    I'd also add that reviewing a SSSP is not a one time job, nor can it be done solely from behind a desk. Ongoing reviews to see how plans are developing during the project will give a real sense of whether the SSSP is just a piece of paper or a living and breathing document.
  • Display boards with "Number of days since last LTI"
    It would be extremely unfair (and very twitter like :wink: ) to place all companies who have ever displayed these signs in the same bracket.

    In isolation, these signs will not drive down reporting, but when coupled with a poor safety culture, they undoubtedly will.
    I'm hoping that the tweet will go on to explain that removing the signs is not the answer to this problem.
  • Insecure load = fall from height
    If in doubt - Fill the form out.

    Nobody has ever gotten into trouble for over reporting events. .
  • What Will White Island Mean For Your Business
    Although the number of parties involved is a surprise, I'm not sure the charges are so far out of kilter that they warrant a review prior to any decisions being made by the courts.

    My own opinion is that WorkSafe will learn as much from the courts interpretation of the HSAWA as PCBUs will. The precedence's that will be set should make things a whole lot clearer, especially when looking at our areas of influence.