Workers urged to take care during wet weather

Monday, 17 June, 2019

Workers urged to take care during wet weather

WorkSafe Victoria is urging construction and farm workers to take extra safety precautions as wet weather and muddy ground increases risk of slips, trips and falls.

The warning comes after parts of Victoria received over 50 mm of rain last week, and other parts of the country are experiencing winter rainfall.

According to WorkSafe Victoria, construction sites and farms are of particular risk this time of year, with mud or water-logged soil increasing the risk of injury and excavation or trench collapses.

To prevent these issues, WorkSafe Executive Director of Health and Safety Julie Nielsen is advising builders, contractors and farmers to assess their sites after rainfall and mark any soft ground with flags or bollards. Alternatively, workers can treat soft ground with crushed rocks until it dries out.

Additionally, “Traffic should be stopped from entering sites until the ground is deemed safe,” she said.

“Care should also be taken with mobile powered machinery such as cranes and elevated work platforms.”

Electrical equipment that has potentially been affected by water should not be used until it has been inspected, tested and made safe.

Finally, farmers should always get help when recovering bogged equipment or animals and ensure they have access to a phone or radio.

“Inclement weather does not necessarily make work places unsafe as long as control measures are put in place to reduce any risks,” Nielsen said.

“Planning ahead and regularly checking on the changing conditions at all work sites helps to ensure all workers go home to their families at the end of the day.”

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