OSH construction sweep in Northland shows pleasing results
Wednesday 16 May 2001
A sweep of Northland construction sites by Occupational Safety and Health Service inspectors last week has shown a vast improvement in the management of health and safety.
OSH Northland region service manager Richard Willis said 22 sites, both residential and commercial from Ruakaka to Whatuwhiwhi were visited over a three-day period last week.
"Overall, our inspectors noted a vast improvement in site health and safety, both from the bigger commercial sites right down to Joe Builder in Kaitaia.
"Generally, we were welcomed on-site, an indication that employers are thinking seriously about their obligations under the Health and Safety in Employment Act.
"Most of the contractors visited are making a concerted effort to get things right, leaving those that are not treating health and safety seriously standing out like the proverbial sore thumb."
However, there is still room for improvement. Seventy-five improvement notices were issued requiring changes to be made in the way work was being undertaken to make it safer.
Three prohibition notices were issued. These notices prohibit work from continuing until some aspect of the work that is likely to cause serious harm to employees is corrected.
Ineffective controls in place while working at height, and poor road- work set-ups were the main offenders requiring improvement/prohibition notices.
Mr Willis said OSH would be taking up the road works issue with both the individual companies and the local councils.