NT WorkSafe recently issued a warning to workers in the construction industry not to modify scaffolding if they are not authorised to do so.
Enquires into incidents involving scaffolding over the past few months have, in some instances, found the scaffolding was modified by subcontractors who felt the scaffolding inhibited their work.
In the latest incident, a worker on a Darwin construction site removed timber planks from scaffolding to facilitate the placement of formwork by a crane.
After removing the planks, the worker fell through the void they had created, but the worker caught hold of the remaining planks and avoided a fall of over three metres.
Other recent incidents include:
As scaffolding is meant to be a safe platform for working at height or used as fall prevention it is important that the structure is suitable for the task required.
The regulator strongly urged all workplaces using scaffolding to ensure the following measures are in place, and that they are effective:
Persons Conducting a Business or Undertaking (PCBU’s) were reminded that scaffolding from where a person or object could fall more than four metres must not be used until it has been inspected by a competent person, who has confirmed in writing that the scaffolding is complete.
If an inspection indicates that scaffolding or its supporting structure creates a risk to health or safety, the scaffolding or support structure must be reinspected after any repairs, alterations and additions are made or carried out on the scaffolding.