The construction, electrical and manufacturing industries often face the scrutiny of the media and the general public over their poor safety record.
However, WorkCover NSW hopes to change the focus following the introduction of 12 new codes of practice. These codes are aim to improve safety in these key sectors and promote good practice for both employers and workers.
These changes replace existing codes under occupational health and safety laws and make legislation clearer and simpler for organisations to follow. They also go into more depth, targeting specific workplace hazards.
Acting General Manager of WorkCover’s Work Health and Safety Division, Peter Dunphy, explained that nothing has been taken out – rather, the new codes provide better information around safety.
“The new codes make it easier for everyone to know and understand their responsibilities,” he said.
“WorkCover is committed to supporting business and industry to adjust to the new arrangements.”
The 12 new codes of practice came into force on July 18 2014 and more information is available on the WorkCover website for employers to access.
Mr Dunphy noted that in previous codes, some specific tasks weren’t mentioned, so it was important to address these specific issues in the new legislation.
“The new codes relate to first aid, construction work, electrical, chemical and plant risks as well as welding and spray painting,” he said.
“The NSW Government is committed to providing a safe and healthy working environment for every NSW worker.”
Some of the other codes include preventing falls in housing construction, safe design of structures, welding processes and demolition work.
Five codes have been removed to either remove duplication or conflict in the new legislation. These codes include prevention of occupational overuse syndrome, amenities for construction work and work in hot and cold environments.
Workplace compensation in NSW
The construction, electrical and manufacturing industries are full of 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.