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Heightened focus for inspectors – too many fall from height incidents

Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ) is concerned about the number of falls from height incidents in the construction industry and has called on all contractors to implement appropriate controls to stem the flow of seriously injured workers and to prevent another tragic death.

WHSQ has always monitored control measures for work at height in the construction industry, but has bolstered its efforts to reduce the number of incidents happening. In recent months, targeted audits of construction sites have been ensuring advice is being followed, and that businesses are compliant.

This audit identified non-compliances relating to work at height on more than a third of sites visited. The most common issues are related to scaffolding (37 per cent) and safe work method statements (13 per cent). The majority of falls recently investigated by WHSQ involved workers falling from roofs or through voids.

When inspectors audit construction sites for uncontrolled work at height risks, they look at safe work method statements, site supervision, edge protection, scaffold and work platforms, and the use of trestle ladders. Fall arrest platforms and systems, ladders, travel restraint systems, stair void protection, industrial safety nets, and excavations are also inspected.

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