The home building and construction industry is potentially one of the most dangerous sectors in NSW. At risk are not only the workers themselves on the site, but also the homeowner and the general public in the area.
To address these concerns, WorkCover NSW is establishing the 2014 House Construction Industry Mentor Program, which pairs medium and large construction firms with smaller ones to address unidentified safety hazards and issues.
In NSW alone, there are more than 9,000 businesses in the house construction industry, employing more than 44,000 workers. It is estimated that this contributes $37.9 billion to the economy each year.
However, in the two years to July 2012 , there were been more than 1,300 work injury claims. It was clear to Acting General Manager of WorkCover's Work Health and Safety Division, Peter Dunphy, that more education across the board was required.
"The House Construction Industry Mentor Program is part of an industry action plan to improve safety and productivity on the State's house construction sites," he said.
"It will enable small construction companies to receive industry-specific advice on how to meet their workplace safety, injury management and workers compensation obligations from their peers."
At the moment, WorkCover NSW is looking for 20 companies to mentor small enterprises. They will address three main areas including the movement of people and materials on-site, sun safety and recovery at work after a workplace injury.
Mr Dunphy explained that although these are simple problems, the best outcomes are achieved with businesses work together and with industry authorities.
"Mentors understand the work health and safety challenges mentees face on a daily basis and can suggest innovative solutions to these problems," he concluded.
"Every worker wants to return home safely at the end of the working day and through the House Construction Industry Mentor Program we aim to have fewer families experience the devastating impact of a workplace injury."
Workplace compensation in NSW
The home building and construction industry contains risks that can result in total permanent disability, but there are ways to cover any damages or losses.
Employees injured at work are also entitled to compensation. It is recommended that you contact a compensation lawyer who can advise you on how to make your claim and assist you through the process.
These lawyers operate on a no win no fee basis, so they can advise you on your chances for success free of charge – if they think you have a case, it's completely up to you whether you engage their services.