Safe Work Australia Chair, Diane Smith-Gander, has called on organisations, employers, and workers to “take a moment for safety” and consider OHS in their workplace this October, which is National Safe Work Month.
“A safety incident can happen in a moment and in any workplace, but a moment’s forethought can prevent harm,” said Smith-Gander.
“Last year in Australia, 191 people died while doing their job and over 106,000 people made a claim for a serious injury. No industry should be unsafe to work in and no death or any injury is acceptable.”
With October being National Safe Work Month, Smith-Gander asked organisations to “take a moment for safety”.
“This can be as simple as spending a few minutes every morning talking with your team about the hazards and risks that are in your workplace, and the ways to prevent harm.
“Anyone can do this, from the worksite to the boardroom, from those on the factory floor to the CEO. Everyone can contribute to making their workplace safer and healthier,” she said.
The National Safe Work Month website has resources to help raise awareness of health and safety in your workplace.
The call for increased diligence comes off the back of Safe Work Australia’s recently released Key Work Health and Safety Statistics Australia 2018, which found that of the 191 workers who were fatally injured in 2017, 93 per cent were male while 31 per cent were caused by vehicle collision, 19 per cent were caused by being hit by moving objects and 15 per cent were caused by falls from height.
Machinery operators and drivers had the highest fatality rate in 2017 at 7.1 fatalities per 100,000 workers, followed by labourers (4.6) and managers (1.7), while the agriculture, forestry and fishing industries had the highest number of work-related injuries at 16.5 fatalities per 100,000 workers followed by transport, postal and warehousing at 8.6 and arts and recreation services at 3.5.
“While there is a 47 per cent decrease in the national workplace fatality rate since 2007, there were still 191 workplace fatalities and Smith-Gander said every worker fatality is one too many,” said Gander.