NSCA Foundation

WorkSafe WA inspectors to test schools' safety

Wednesday, 18 September, 2019

WorkSafe WA inspectors to test schools' safety

WorkSafe Western Australia (WorkSafe WA) inspectors are going back to school as part of a proactive program to improve workplace health and safety (WHS). The program — which will run throughout the 2019/20 financial year — will see inspectors visiting public and private primary and secondary schools across the state to look at hazards facing workers, including potential hazards in areas such as science labs, home economics rooms and swimming pools.

WorkSafe WA Director Sally North said the program expands on previous programs which looked at hazards potentially affecting cleaners and gardeners, brought on by high injury rates. “This inspection program will widen our attention on education even further,” North said. “Some of these aspects of the education area have not been looked at for some time, if at all, so it’s time to revisit them and identify any widespread issues.”

Inspectors will focus on health and safety issues related to manual tasks, falls from height, electricity, plant guarding, hazardous substances and slips, trips and falls; however, they will also cover more industry-specific issues such as design and technology, kitchens and automotive areas. Asbestos management, violence and aggression, infectious diseases, quad bikes, construction work and contractor management will also be under the spotlight.

North said the primary aim was to deliver information to employers; however, WorkSafe WA will take enforcement action if WHS breaches are found. “The first priority is always raising awareness because we believe this is the best way in which to lessen the risk of work-related injury and illness,” she said. The program is one of several scheduled by WorkSafe WA, including one looking at WHS compliance in commercial kitchens and another examining high-risk pressure vessels.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/Dmitry Vereshchagin

NSCA Foundation is a member based, non-profit organisation working together with members to improve workplace health and safety throughout Australia. For more information and membership details click here
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