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SafeWork SA to audit high risk construction work from February 2020

Media Release
30 January 2020

Construction continues to be one of the most hazardous industries, exposing workers to a variety of hazards and risks, resulting in unacceptably high levels of injuries and fatalities.

Safe Work Method Statements (SWMS) for high risk construction work (HRCW) are a key strategy relied upon to reduce this toll.

HRCW involves 18 activities identified in the WHS Regulations as having significant potential for serious harm from historical national data.

The principle purpose of a SWMS is to assist supervisors, workers and other parties at a workplace to understand the requirements that have been established, through consultation, to work in a safe way.

From February 2020 SafeWork SA’s inspectors will be undertaking compliance audits on Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) for high risk construction work (HRCW).

Inspectors will have a focus on compliance to ensure SWMS for HRCW are site specific and easily understood by workers including those from non-English speaking backgrounds. For example, pictures or diagrams may be a more effective way of communicating information.

This compliance focus is also in recognition of the construction industry being identified as a priority industry in the 2012-22 national work health and safety strategy.

Read more about SWMS for HRCW including a template for downloading.

For further information and advice on complying with legislative requirements, call us on 1300 365 255. Or speak to one of our friendly Workplace Advisors, who can provide you with WHS information, practical advice and support, and even visit you at your workplace.