SafeWork SA encourages workplace vigilance to prevent falls

Safework SA has recorded 357 interventions regarding falls from heights in 2020, prompting the government body to encourage the development of strategies.

Two out of every three falls reported to Safework SA resulted in a fracture while 95 per cent of serious head and neck injuries were from falls less than three metres.

SafeWork SA executive director Martyn Campbell encouraged all workplaces to develop strategies that prevent the risks of falls.

“Falls can occur on all kinds of work sites and to people performing all types of tasks. Employers need to have systems in place to prevent them,” he said. “While falls are common and costly, they are also preventable.”

Safework SA encourages strong communication between people conducting business, workers, health and safety representatives and committees.

“Doing so will help to identify hazards before any injury, illness or incident can occur,” Safework SA stated. “This then leads to developing measures to eliminate or reduce the associated risks.”

According to Safework SA, slips, trips and falls are the second leading cause of workplace injury.

Safework SA encourages workplaces to familiarise themselves with the document Managing the risks of falls in the workplace – Code of Practice to reduce the risk of falls from height, while providing safer means of access and ensuring that work that involves a fall risk is conducted on the ground or on solid construction.

Other methods include providing a fall prevention device such as a secure fence, edge protection, working platforms and covers where possible.

Construction records the highest number of  falls out of all industries in South Australia.

Mining contractors undertaking construction works would also be exposed to the same risks of this category of injuries.

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