Over the past few months several workers in NSW have been involved in falls and injured themselves seriously while at work, according to a statement released by WorkCover earlier this week (August 15).
Employers are being urged to take these accidents as a reminder to put rigorous safety measures in place to protect the health of staff who have to work at heights.
Examples of professions that are often at a risk of a fall include construction workers, labourers and bricklayers.
One fitter was conducting repairs from the boom of a mobile crane when he fell three metres, sustaining serious head injuries.
In a separate incident, a labourer lost his life after he fell ten metres from a platform. This man was not wearing a harness.
Other accidents included a tree lopper who broke his leg, a bricklayer who fell over three metres and sustained concussion, fractured spine and broken ribs, and a volunteer who fell from a ladder.
One man even tumbled eight metres, when he went through a skylight in a commercial building in Byron Bay. He sustained serious injuries but he survived the fall.
WorkCover NSW general manager John Watson said that these accidents serve as reminders to employers and employees about the dangers of working from height.
“Working from heights is hazardous work and, as these incidents show, a fall can result in serious injury or death,” he said.
Mr Watson went on to explain that employers have a responsibility to ensure that they have adequate occupational health and safety laws in place.
This may include investing in appropriate safety gear such as harnesses and helmets, as well as having their employees undergo a rigorous training process.
“Under work health and safety laws, workplaces must have safety systems in place to prevent workers falling from heights,” he said.
“Businesses must provide workers with information, instruction, training and supervision in risk control procedures.”
In addition, employees are then required to comply with the rules – they too have a part to play in maintaining their own safety.
If you or a family member are ever involved in a serious accident such as this, or any other accident in the workplace, then you may be eligible for workers compensation.
This can help to cover costs including medical bills, time taken off work and emotional impacts.