• is a spider bite a work related LTI?
    Agree with both spider bites and bee stings as work related risks if received during the work day particularly when your staff could be stationed in isolated areas or areas of known risk (near beech forests, near apiaries, in vegetation or in storage areas etc) would require adequate controls to be in place in an emergency situation - e.g. anaphylactic shock. With bees not everyone knows they are allergic beforehand.
  • fatigue Flowchart
    Agree with Kip, useful baseline to utilise
    Currently our only fatigue management flowchart is simply a monthly report based on hours worked per week for all staff (axis has weeks and grouped hours on other axis) hours grouped by <55, 55-60, 60-65, 65-70, 70-75, 75-80, 80+hours. The expectation is certain colours should not be appearing on the chart without Managers explanation.
  • Chemical bunding scoping
    This code of practice may assist, if you copy the below reference into your browser window.
  • Smoking in a workshop.
    All employers are required to comply with the Smoke Free Environments Act and clients would have an expectation that the workplace would be safe to enter.

    It sounds like your business needs to communicate your Company expectations better i.e. Company Smoking Policy and a meeting with staff to communicate the change and why (to meet your Companies legal responsibilities, safeguard staff and clients health, reputation etc). The Smoke free Environments Act is a great resource for wording your Policy.

    Ensure smoke free signs have been placed at entry areas and designated smoke free areas. Also with fuels and flammables around this may assist to determine additional areas required to be smoke free. This Policy would apply to everyone working in and entering the workplace - workers, owners, clients, subcontractors etc so make sure it is well communicated.
  • ACC to retire Habit at Work
    Really disappointing they state "If you're working in other industries or professions, contact your industry or professional body. They may have ergonomic resources and information." Even if the current information required review at least it was available. It appears the previously useful resource for Machine operators is now no longer available.
  • Seatbelts in Self-Propelled Mobile Mechanical Plant
    The key is "when fitted with a protective structure". The protective structure is ineffective unless a seatbelt is worn. In the Manufacturers supplied Operators Manual there will be a requirement for a seatbelt to be worn if the machine came with an OPS , if retrofitted the engineering designer will also have stipulated this.
  • Advice re working at height training for H&S Manager
    Agree with Jo, taking the height training course was invaluable to understand what is covered in the course and what gear is required. My biggest take away was to ensure the right lanyards are purchased and used. If you can prevent a fall with fall restraint lanyards and they are suitable for the task, it removes the hazard of fall arrest systems that allow a fall and require additional resources and rescue plans to prevent injury.
  • Separation of spare oxygen and acetylene cylinders in workshops
    Agreed, I note the American Welding Society Health and Safety related Z49.1 standard it was based on is now dated 2012 and is available free from the American Welding Society. It appears the separation distance in this updated document refers to 20 feet or 6.1m see
  • Separation of spare oxygen and acetylene cylinders in workshops
    NZS4781-1973 COP for Safety in Welding and Cutting provides guidance on the use and storage of cylinders. states Oxygen cylinders shall not be stored near highly combustible material......acetylene or other fuel-gas cylinders.... Oxygen cylinders in storage shall be separated from fuel-gas cylinders or combustible materials.... a minimum distance of 6m or by a fire resisting barrier at least 2m high having a fire resistance rating of at least 1/2 hour.
    The standard is priced around $45 and has a wealth of cylinder use and storage information.
  • Getting rid of pallets
    Our local scouts use them as a fundraiser. They cut them down for firewood. There may be other non profit organisations doing similar in your area.
  • Driver Training - Skill building or just confidence building?
    We found 4WD training reduced incidents in the company as it gave the attendees an opportunity to trial their vehicles in a number of situations (under competent supervision) that some would not generally face day to day and provided them with the necessary skills and knowledge to manage the situation and understand the limitations of both themselves and their vehicle.
    It also assumes no knowledge of the workings of 4WD vehicles so they get a basic overview of the differences between a road vehicle and a 4WD - advantages and disadvantages.
    It also taught them how to risk assess prior to accessing areas and safely extract their vehicle if they misjudged or conditions changed and caught them out and what appropriate resources they should have on hand.
    The 4WD trainers we have had in the past tend to put some time prior to the course in understanding the activities being undertaken and the terrain so they can structure or customise the course to suit your situation which we have found invaluable.
  • Noise Test inside moving plant cabs
    Hi Michael
    yes we use dosimeters to take inhouse sample measurements inside our mobile plant, focusing on older plant first to see if we have any issues - cabs requiring additional baffles, maintenance etc.

    The print outs are shared with the operators and noise levels have been well below 85 db.
    Useful exercise to undertake.

    In the past we have also used the relatively cheap clip on dosemeter to see if we could identify an issue for one of our operators when his health monitoring identified a decrease in hearing from the previous year, it lit up red when 85db was exceeded and he monitored it and reported back. Turned out his radio was the issue, he had preferred to turned it up until then. It was a good learning for everyone.

    Also would hand over to an occupational hygienist for more indepth monitoring if issues are identified that additional investigation, insulation modifications or maintenance did not resolve.
  • Incident Reporting Procedure
    Hi Chrissy, we use the app. Cheers Denise
  • Incident Reporting Procedure
    Hi Catherine
    In our system it is treated as an "Opportunity for Improvement" so covers safety, environment and quality. It may be an initial report prior to an investigation or it may simply be a headsup that a hazard has been identified and dealt to or a nearmiss occurred, to share the information with the rest of the team. Each Manager is responsible to followup to ensure appropriate immediate actions have been taken to avoid a recurrence or whether other resources are required to assist.

    Agree with LouiseB no magic cure-all - it needs to be about encouraging people to share their knowledge, using their expertise to assist with finding solutions, taking care of others and providing feedback so they can see the positive changes happening. It also helps when they understand that by reporting, trends can be identified and even minor things that may be happening often can be monitored and tracked to assist to find solutions. CEO support with the message is really important and should not be underestimated.

    We use an app on Smartphones which has assisted with increasing the reporting with those who don't like filling out forms but in saying that were also having good results with paper copies as they would at least verbally report to their Manager who would assist to fill the form out but now we are getting the pictures too and as they say a photo can save a lot of words. Good luck with the journey....

    PS forgot to add in the early days we placed all the names of people who reported an incident into a hat each month, drew a name out and they won a voucher. Some would have reported anyway but It gave some an incentive and reason to make the effort and we improved the hazard and nearmiss reporting.
  • TRIFR etc
    When benchmarking lagging indicators we use the 200,000 rate as it is the closest measure to manhours for our organisation per year. If we applied the 1 million per year we would be suggesting that if our workforce worked 5x the manhours it would be expected to have 5x the injuries. Manhours are only one risk factor and a planned increase in manhours (with controls in place) does not automatically increase injury rates. For internal reporting we focus more on the leading indicators.