Launch of new Victorian structural steel safety standard

Monday, 27 July, 2009

With the support of 60 industry representatives including engineers, major builders, HSRs and unions, WorkSafe Victoria recently launched its new industry standard on the Safe Erection of Structural Steel for Buildings.

WorkSafe’s Construction and Utilities Executive Officer Allan Beacom and Australand’s Dave Waterfield launched the standard that applies to portal frame buildings and residential and other buildings where steel frames provide structural strength.

In launching the standard, Waterfield spoke about a tragic accident that occurred on an Australand site where a steel portal frame collapsed trapping and killing one employee underneath: “We need to get this document out to all the riggers and crane crews involved in the erection of steel frames to ensure that they are all working at the highest standard possible. I would like to see the checklists in this standard done prior to every lift and throughout the project to make sure that everything is done right.”

Beacom praised the efforts of the working party who worked to get this industry standard to print: “I would like to thank the working group including Associated Riggers Australia, Aus Truestyle, the HIA, MBAV and the Foundation for Safety Members who worked to get this document completed.”

Beacom also noted the work done by Michael Little as the technical writer and Wayne Gearon (Manager–C&U Operational Strategy) for the drafting and editing of the numerous versions of the standard.

WorkSafe Victoria will be writing to all rigging companies, crane companies and steel fabricators in the coming month to make them aware of the new industry standard as well as providing them with the link to the standard on the WorkSafe website.

WorkSafe inspectors will be ensuring that when they visit any workplace where structural steel is being erected, it is being done in line with the new industry standard.

The standard is available from www.worksafe.vic.gov.au.

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