Making Safety a Priority in National Safe Work Month
- 05 October 2018
Every day we see a plethora of advertisements and warnings about road and pedestrian safety. There are billboards, advertising campaigns and daily reminders on the news about how dangerous our daily commutes can be, but we also need to be vigilant about safety in the workplace. This is the focus of Safe Work Australia’s National Safe Work Month.
The campaign is celebrating ten years of helping keep workers safe while at their jobs, originally starting as a group to help formulate WHS and workers’ compensation policies around the country. Since then, we’ve seen a gradual decline in the number of work-related fatalities and compensation claims, which is great news.
There is still work to be done, however. Today, injuries and diseases caused by unsafe workplaces not only have a direct financial impact on the economy - tallied at over sixty billion dollars a year - but have potentially devastating effects on the workers and their families. An incredible 191 people died while working last year and nobody wants to see that number be repeated or climb. Not only is it in our financial interests to promote workplace safety but there is a human cost, too.
These are preventable statistics. No matter the type of workplace, accidents are preventable. National Safe Work Month, held through the month of October, asks people to take time to make sure their workplace is as safe as reasonably possible and to talk to their fellow co-workers about workplace safety.
Every industry has their own range of potential workplace hazards. The manufacturing industry, for example, represents 9% of all worker fatalities across Australia, and is statistically hazardous for younger workers who lodged a 44% injury rate compared to other sectors. This is likely due to how they are more likely to take extra risks without understanding potential consequences, and their eagerness to perform well can lead them to take dangerous shortcuts. Manufacturing-related risks include slips, trips and falls; the danger of working around hazardous equipment, and damage to the body’s muscles and skeletal system by lifting heavy objects incorrectly. It’s a reminder to be careful while transporting crates, barrels and other large items that are heavier and bulkier than they appear.
The transport industry has its own unique set of hazards. In addition to the lifting of heavy objects, transport operators must contend with the toll of shift work, the lack of physical activity that leads from sitting behind a wheel for extended periods of time, and the dangers of working at height as they access high loads. The continual pressure to hit tight deadlines can lead drivers to make costly mistakes at high speed. Uniquely, workers in the transport industry are exposed to airborne gases and fumes at a rate that no other industry faces.
The Safe Work Australia website offers a wide range of tools designed to assist workers and employers. On the site are guides to each of the major industries that report a high number of workplace deaths and injuries, helpful safety information to print and put around the office, and links to local safety legislation and compliance.
At Bulk Fuel Australia we take workplace safety very seriously. We value our team of bulk fuel delivery drivers and want them to go home safely every day. Talk to Bulk Fuel Australia today about our extensive range of on-site fuel delivery options that service the entire country.