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Safety facilitation film based on the true story of Jed Millen

Seen through the eyes of an apprentice, this film highlights the some of the factors that contributed to the incident in which Jed Millen was injured. This film uses Jed's story to highlight the moments, conversations and decisions that could contributed to a different outcome.

The film is designed for groups to discuss how to better ask questions, stop, think and lead change that will ultimately create safer workplaces.

Download a copy of this film (MP4, 500 MB) -->

This film is designed for group workshops with a facilitator. Facilitator guide (PDF, 0.53 MB) and notes (PDF, 0.57 MB) are provided to help guide discussion.

Further information

For more information see Building bridges - Jed's story

HE Henry
JM Jed Millen
MI Mike
OS Onscreen
NA Non-attributable speaker
UM Unidentified Male
EN Engineer

Safety facilitation film based on the true story of Jed Millen.

JE Yes, okay, that's it. Yes, that looks good. All right, thanks, Mike, just leave it there.

MI Cheers, mate.

JE Okay, well, that's the crane set up.

HE You can't leave the crane there; it's got to come over here.

JE Good morning to you too, Henry.

HE Yes, morning.

JE This is my new trainee, Marty.

HE Just move the crane.

JE Well, what about the overhead power lines? Are they off?


HE Yes, I think so.

JE You think so?

HE Look, I'm pretty sure... Look, we've got to get this knocked out before the trains come through. Just move the crane, we haven't got time for this.

JE Mate, I'm not moving it until I know the power's off. He thinks so. He's running this show? How can the supervisor not know if the power's off?

Yes. Boss, as I told Henry, I'm not moving the crane until someone guarantees that the power is off. Yes, I know about the train, but... No, I'm not going to take a risk because someone thinks so and kills someone. Because of that... Yes, I will move the crane when the power is 100% confirmed to be off and not before.

HE Did boss ring you?

JE Yes.

HE So, why aren't you moving the crane?

JE Are the overhead powerlines off?

HE Look, the job's been in the works for weeks, it'll be turned off.

JE But you don't know for sure?


I mean, if you can tell me for sure that the overhead power lines are off, then I'll happily move the crane, but until then...

HE This is ridiculous, I haven't got time for this.

JE Well, we've made Henry's day. Bad timing wasn't all on us. God, what a start. Four hours sleep, coppers give us a ticket for using a heavy vehicle on the road between seven and seven. And now this. It is going to be another long day.

Henry's off the phone. Five, four, three, two, one. Boss, what a surprise. Yes, I will move the crane, absolutely, once I know the overhead power lines are off. No, not until then. Yes, fine, I'll find out for myself.

Seriously? Hey, mate... Mate? I think that's the engineer.

EN Yes?

JE Mate, are you the engineer?

EN Yes, I am.

JE Are the overhead powerlines off?

EN Yes, look, I just did it then, it's all good.

JE Excellent. Well, thanks, terrific. Well, now we can move the cranes and we can make a start for the day. That'll make everyone happy.

Mike, yes, we're on the move again. The overhead power lines are off.

MI Yes, no worries.


JE At last.

Slew left. Slew left. Yes, come around. Yes, that's good. Thanks.

MI Yes, cheers, mate.

UM Hey, boys, you know there's a gas line under your main rigger?

JE What, that's not on the plans?

UM They're usually out of date.

JE Thanks, mate. All right. Looks like we're on the move again, boys, unless you want to cause a huge gas leak.

MI Good.

JE Cheers. I should have stayed in bed. You have got to be kidding me. I wonder what else can go wrong today?

OS Can you relate to Jed's story so far?

OS What safety issues have you seen so far?

J Oh, thanks. What did you bring? Vegemite sandwiches. And Dippy Biscuits. I bet there's even a Popper in there. There is. Did your mum pack this? That's hilarious. Mate, you're going to be no good to me. We have a 36 hour. You can't work hard for 36 hours on Vegemite and Dippy Biscuits.


Mate, I'll let you eat some of my breakfast. You'll be passed out by lunch if I don't. Vegemite sandwiches. You're hilarious.

HE You blokes ready to get back into it?

JE Yes, almost. So, where did everyone go?

HE Toolbox talk.

JE Well, thanks for the invite.

HE You didn't need to be there, it's a waste of time.

JE Anything we need to know about?

HE No, just the usual. Same as the last site. I'll see you out there.

JE Can you believe it.

UM Hey, Jed.

JE Hey, mate.

UM It's your call.

JE Heads.


Well, looks like I'm up top today. I'll get you to stay here and watch them land the piece. It's a bit too chaotic at the moment for me to keep one eye on you and be concentrating on this lift. So, just stay here and observe. Okay? Beauty.

OS Jed and the Apprentice Marty weren't told about a toolbox talk that happened that morning. What sort of implications could this have?

As you continue watching think about you, your workplace and the similarities.

HE Left you down here, hey? Come on, all the action's up top. Come on, I'll keep an eye on you.

I can see the look on your face. Why isn't Jed wearing a harness and the Boilermakers are? You see that piece in the centre of the bridge wall, well that there is going to lift up, it's a plug, if you like. It's kind of like cutting out a window. And when they pop that piece up, the floor of the bridge is underneath. They've got all the edge to protect them around it too, so there's nowhere where he could possibly fall.

They're going to try again. Step back.

JE Righto, Mike, let's go up again, mate. Please, let's give us 3.5 ton.


MI That's a 3.5?

JE Yes. Boom up.

HE Once this is out, the Boilermakers keep cutting away at the bit underneath until it drops to the ground. So those guys will need to harness because they're working close to an edge. But Jed, here, will be long gone by then.

Yes, we did this the other day and the bridge was the same. There was no drama at all. Look, I'll show you a drawing from our prestart on the same job we did the other day. I haven't got around to doing one for this job yet.

JE Yes, right, Mike, let's go up again. 3.5 ton.

MI 3.5?

JE Yes, boom up.

MI Nothing, mate. It's still not budging.

JE How many more bloody times?

HE I mean, this is what... The twenty time they've tried this lift. It's already slowing the job down. We've got trains due in a few hours. The Boilermakers have been cutting for ages.


The last bridge piece popped easier than this one. The Boilermakers can't make a clean cut when they cut through concrete and steel. Some of the concrete gets stuck. Makes it damn hard to lift. I mean, that's about six ton there they're trying to lift. Plus, they don't want it to bounce out either. It's a heavier piece than last time though.

Hey, boys, better slow the cut down. We don't want the bridge to start to collapse with the centrepiece removed. We've already cut a metre back.

HE What did he say?

NA Keep going.

JE What? I can't hear a bloody thing.

HE What the... Where's... Where did he go? Hey, everybody, off the bridge. Get off the bridge. Get off the bridge now. Ring 000, the rig is down and there's bloody, ring 000 – now.

OS Who do you relate to in this scenario and why? Henry, Jed or Marty (camera point of view).

Six months later.

NA Who's the site super?

NA Are these lines live or what?

N Yes, they're live.


NANo, they're off.

NA I don't know what the others are doing, but it's faster this way. We need to get this done now.

N The sooner this is finished, the sooner we can get home.

NA I haven't had an induction. This site's the same as the others, yes?

NA Oh, he's been on one of these jobs before, he knows the drill.

NA That doesn't sound very safe. I probably shouldn't say anything because I don't want to seem like a troublemaker.

NA Management. They say safety is their priority, but they don't walk the walk.

JE Why is everyone in such a damn rush? Stop, communicate with each other. Look out for each other. If you have a concern, stop, and go and ask about it. Don't do it if you don't feel good about it.

Think about your actions before someone else gets hurt.

JM Well said.

OS Jed Millen, Safety Advocate.

JE So, what happened, Jed?


JM I fell. It was like going through a trapdoor. The Boilermakers just kept cutting the steel. And chaos and confusion, and I hit the ground 5.5 m later. It was a simple case of... My back just mangled up. I just twisted my back, upper back problems, ankle, and it was so preventable. It could have been a lot better. Lack of supervision. People weren't in control. And just running around like ants in an ant farm.

Chaos, lack of communication, time, fatigue management, it all played a part in it.

At the end of the day, look after yourselves. It's a simple case of what you do can impact on others. Just in a split second, you can go from in control to out of control.

OS What are the lessons from Jed's story?

What meaningful, measurable change are you going to make in your workplace? Write it down as a reminder.

How can your workplace lead the change toward safety?

Remember to ask questions, stop, think and lead change.

Thank you for your participation.

Work safe. Home safe.
Queensland Government

Run time: 11 minutes 23 seconds.