WorkSafe ACT is warning its work health and safety (WHS) and COVID-19 compliance campaign will step up next week, with on-the-spot fines issued for COVID-19 breaches.
WorkSafe ACT has been carrying out a targeted campaign in key ACT suburbs to ensure all WHS and COVID-19 obligations are being met, hitting jobsites in the suburbs of Taylor and Throsby this week.
Inspectors visited 43 sites in Taylor on Tuesday, 21 September, issuing a number of notices including:
- 14 prohibition notices for not managing the risks of falling from heights; unsafe scaffolding and electrical equipment; and COVID-19-related non-compliance.
- 67 improvement notices for inadequate housekeeping, site security and amenities; untested electrical equipment; not managing the risks of slips, trips and falls; and COVID-19-related non-compliance.
On Thursday, 23 September, 38 sites in Throsby were visited by seven teams of inspectors. Again, a number of notices were issued including:
- Six prohibition notices, including three sites closed due to not managing the risks of falls, and unsafe electrical equipment.
- 67 improvement notices for not managing the risks of falls; inadequate site security and amenities; untested electrical equipment; and COVID-19-related non-compliance.
ACT Work Health and Safety Commissioner Jacqueline Agius was onsite in Throsby.
“We continue to see non-compliance in this sector,” she said. “And it’s not just COVID-19 non-compliance – around 50 per cent of the notices issued during this campaign are for not managing work health and safety risks.”
WorkSafe ACT has published a new checklist for the residential sector to assist duty holders to comply with their COVID-19 compliance. It clearly shows what is expected and what WorkSafe ACT inspectors will be looking at when auditing COVID-19 compliance.
“We continue to see common risks that are not being managed,” said Ms Agius. “COVID-19 compliance is in addition to duties for protecting health and safety of workers, not a substitute for it.
“To continually see these risks across the sector is unacceptable.”
On-the-spot fines for COVID-19 non-compliance will be issued from next week.