SafeWork SA undertakes compliance checks on MEWPs

Friday, 10 July, 2020

SafeWork SA undertakes compliance checks on MEWPs

SafeWork SA will conduct a second round of state-wide compliance audits on mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPS) for a period of three months. MEWPs can be used to control the risks to workers posed by working at heights; however, there is an increased risk of crush injury to workers operating from within an MEWP work basket. Following audits in 2019, inspectors will again be visiting workplaces across the mining, construction, manufacturing, retail and transport industries to ensure MEWPS are properly maintained and tested, and that workplaces have appropriate systems in place to reduce the risk of injury to workers.

From 1 January 2019 to 30 June 2019, SafeWork SA undertook a compliance program focused on MEWPS, carrying out 336 site visits and 261 compliance audits, following a series of fatal and serious incidents between 2014 and 2018. A total of 87 statutory notices were issued in response to non-compliance during the 2019 audit, with construction and manufacturing industries receiving the highest number of notices, according to Martyn Campbell, SafeWork SA Executive Director. Findings from the 2019 audit are available in the elevating work platforms audit report 2019.

“Our commitment to undertake a follow-up compliance audit is ensuring compliance is maintained and that businesses and operators understand their responsibility in ensuring their own safety and the safety of co-workers,” said Campbell.

A new guideline for MEWPs to assist PCBUs, workers and self-employed persons understand and control the hazards and risks associated with the safe use of MEWPs is available on the SafeWork SA website. It also provides guidance on ground support personnel during operation of the MEWP. Printed copies of the guideline are also available to order online.

“It is crucial to ensure the operator of an MEWP is properly trained and competent in its use as the controls can vary across different manufacturers. The SafeWork SA guideline clearly stipulates the minimum standards of training required, along with a checklist to ensure the training requirements have been met,” Campbell said.

For further advice about the safe use of MEWPs, contact the SafeWork SA Help Centre on 1300 365 255.

Image credit: © Gough

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