The Roads and Traffic Authority and WorkCover NSW have developed an action plan to ensure the safety of all employees involved in the construction of a floodplain bridge that will cross the Macleay River.
Forming part of the Pacific Highway Upgrade Alliance Agreement of 2010, the plan will help to promote safe work practices by cementing practical solutions to injury management into the culture of the building site.
The bridge itself will be one of Australia’s longest – measuring in at 3.2 kilometres – and will require the use of over 900 ‘super-T’ beams.
Construction began in 2010 and the development firm in charge of the project Abigroup says it will be due for completion some time in 2012.
The agreement will see inspectors from WorkCover joining forces with RTA officers, contractors and labourers to minimise the risk of workplace injuries.
Speaking on the partnership, acting general manager at WorkCover’s Work Health and Safety Division Peter Dunphy said that large scale roadworks had a dynamic work environment that required careful management.
Dunphy asserted: “WorkCover has a strong record of working collaboratively with the RTA and its principal contractors and alliances partners over a long period of time to ensure road construction works are carried out in a safe, healthy and productive manner.
“Since the signing of the Pacific Highway Upgrade Alliance Agreement there have been no workplace fatalities on any [RTA] sites.”
However, Dunphy was quick to comment on the dangerous nature of construction, citing the fact that five people had died and that ten had been seriously injured on public roadworks in the 18 months before March 2011.
While many employers take the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of their staff members, occasionally accidents do happen.
In these cases workers may be able to access payments to cover the costs of medical procedures and rehabilitation.
These compensation funds can be made more readily accessible with the help of a personal injury lawyer who has the experience necessary to determine the particular legal nature of a victim’s case.
Depending on the circumstances surrounding an accident, a no win no fee law firm might be able to provide workers with a more financially viable route to compensation, providing them with an up-front assessment of the documentation that may be required to make a case successful either over the phone or through a face-to-face interview.