Construction workers and their families may be pleased to hear of a renewed agreement between two key industry bodies that is designed to strengthen the measures in place that protect against workplace injury.
WorkCover NSW and the Master Builders Association (MBA) have recently entered into a contract that focuses on improving the quality of protocols that deal with ongoing health and safety issues such and injury management procedures.
The renewed framework will allow the two bodies to identify and categorise various injury types and their initial causes by specific industry segments.
This top-down approach will allow both the MBA and WorkCover to address hazards on a more granular level and develop relevant protocols to be applied by sector, rather than having blanket responses.
General manager of the Work Health and Safety Division at WorkCover John Watson said that the partnership highlighted the commitment of both parties to the ongoing health and safety of all staff members.
Watson asserted: “The construction industry is one of NSW’s highest risk industries with 4392 injuries and 22 fatalities during 2008 and 2009, which cost the WorkCover Scheme $291 million.”
“Through this partnership agreement, WorkCover NSW and the MBA are committed to reducing these figures by targeting the highest risk industry segments.”
The segments identified by Watson as representing the greatest ongoing hazards to workers include building residential, demolition, road and bridge construction and concreting services.
One of the major benefits of the renewed deal is that the experienced workers who make up the MBA are well situated to assist WorkCover by helping to develop effective safety solutions that cover areas that they find to be important to their industry.
“By working collaboratively with the construction industry, we aim to deliver practical, cost effective solutions which deliver sustainable improvements to work health and safety, injury management, return to work and workers compensation within the highest risk industry segments,” said Watson.
The biggest winners from the renewed agreement could be the employees at smaller firms that lack the expertise or assets to deliver in-depth policies on workplace safety.
One of the main problems of not having adequate provisions in place is that the company could be placed in a position where they are liable for any accidents that may occur.
Personal injury lawyers are usually able to ascertain whether or not an employee is able to make a claim for compensation to help them cover the costs of medical treatments and rehabilitation procedures – sometimes on a no win no fee basis.