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Watch out for roadworkers as wet weather continues

The Bureau of Meteorology has predicted continuing wetter than average conditions are likely to persist across eastern Australia until June.

With parts of South-East Queensland still very wet, with saturated soils and swollen rivers, the above average rainfall in some areas has prompted a reminder to have safe systems in place for repair work on roads.

Principal contractors doing repair work on roads must prepare a written work health and safety management plan before starting the project, and every person working on the project must be informed about the plan.

Workplace Health and Safety Queensland statistics show there has been at least one traffic controller’s death every year, while around 100 are injured and need medical treatment or time off work.

While drivers should stick to designated speed limits through roadworks, road construction businesses must have plans in place to protect traffic controllers from fatigued or distracted drivers and heavy holiday traffic.

A traffic management plan or traffic guidance scheme should be part of the safety management plan. Traffic controllers perform high risk construction work, so a safe work method statement must be prepared which includes measures to control risk, and how these measures will be monitored and reviewed.

The Traffic management for construction or maintenance work code of practice (PDF, 0.8 MB) for managing risks at roadworks includes the setting up, operating, changing and ultimate dismantling of a traffic guidance scheme, followed by the determination of appropriate measures to manage exposure to the risks. This process applies to all roadworks, regardless of size or complexity.