SA: compliance spotlight on musculoskeletal disorders in manufacturing

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Tuesday, 14 January, 2020 - 12:15
Policy & legislation
South Australia

Reducing musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and related traumatic joint, muscle and tendon injuries across the manufacturing sector is the focus of a compliance and safety awareness campaign being conducted by SafeWork SA.

According to Safe Work Australia, workplace injury and musculoskeletal disorders led to 55 per cent of serious claims in 2015–16, with the most common being traumatic joint/ligament and muscle/tendon injuries (almost 43 per cent).

SafeWork SA will visit a range of manufacturing businesses, auditing the safety control measures in place to protect workers from musculoskeletal disorders including workplace induction training and safe lifting training.

Under the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 (SA), business owners are responsible for providing adequate training and supervision for all workers, ensuring equipment is in safe working order, and appropriately managing all risks to prevent injuries.

“We will be conducting compliance audits in manufacturing businesses to ensure improved safety in South Australian workplaces,” said SafeWork SA executive director, Martyn Campbell.

“During our visits, we work with the business to identify the challenges and hazards unique to their workplace and discuss the best safety solution for the situation.

“Where we find a safety issue that breaches WHS requirements, our Inspectors will issue a compliance notice.”

To comply with legislative requirements, businesses must identify all hazards specific to their workplace, and have appropriate control measures in place to prevent or minimise the risk of harm to workers and the public.

A successful safety plan ensures that:

  • all hazards have been identified and appropriate control measures are in place;
  • all workers receive adequate training and supervision; and
  • all safety control measures are reviewed regularly.