Tree work compliance to climb to new safety heights
SafeWork NSW Inspectors have commenced visits to businesses in the tree work industry across NSW to improve safety and compliance in the sector.
SafeWork Executive Director Compliance & Dispute Resolution Matthew Press said the campaign aims to raise awareness in an industry that continues to have too many serious incidents.
“Every NSW tree worker has the right to a safe and healthy workplace. Sadly, since March 2018 there have been over 270 incidents in the industry. During that time workplace compensation payments have cost the NSW workers compensation system over $49.5 million, with a considerable amount of potential under-insurance identified in this sector also.
“Inspectors will be visiting businesses who undertake arborist activities such as tree mulching, lopping, and removal, and will focus on the highest incidents areas - falls from heights, being struck by falling objects, and safe use of wood chippers.
“Inspectors will also be verifying that all workers undertaking traffic control work on or adjacent to public roads hold a Traffic Control Work Training card and will be educating operators on traffic control training requirements.
“Referrals will be made to the NSW State Insurance Regulatory Authority if non-insurance or under-insurance is suspected during the visits, with fines of up to $3600 for undertaking work without a necessary licence or authorisation.
“Planning is key when conducting tree work. Whether you are a business owner or worker, everyone has a responsibility to ensure workplaces are as safe as possible,” Mr Press said.
Unsafe work practices can be reported to SafeWork through the Speak Up app or by calling 13 10 50.
For further information visit:
- Tree Work (Arboriculture) Resources, SafeWork NSW.
- Tree Work Self-Assessment Checklist, SafeWork NSW.
- Woodchipper Guide, SafeWork NSW.
- Guide to Managing Risks of Tree Trimming and Removal Work, SafeWork Australia.
- Who needs a policy, workers compensation insurance information, icare.