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19 April 2018

Incident Alert

We are investigating a fatal workplace incident that occurred yesterday (Wednesday, 18 April) at Willunga Hill. It is believed the worker, using a tractor with a front end loader and bucket attachment, was attempting to lift and move a round hay bale when the bale fell back onto the operator. SafeWork SA is working together with police and emergency services in the ongoing investigation of this matter.

General safety information

SafeWork SA reminds everyone who operates a tractor, or similar lifting equipment, about the importance of working safely with these machines and the use of correct implements for the task being undertaken.

When working with a tractor or other lifting machinery, care should be taken to ensure that loads are secure and the risk of falling on the operator is considered and controlled. Please ensure work is carried out in accordance with the manufacturer's Rated Operating Load.

The tractor should be fitted with a falling object protective structure to protect the operator in certain activities. In South Australia, a rollover protective structure (ROPS) is also required to be fitted to all tractors with a weight of 560kg to 15 tonne.

If you work with tractors, read the relevant section in our Farmers' Guidebook to work health and safety for practical guidance on managing risks related to tractors.

27 March 2018

SafeWork SA re-opens Gayle Woodford investigation

SafeWork SA has re-classified the death of regional nurse Gayle Woodford as work-related, following a review.

SafeWork SA Executive Director Martyn Campbell, who commenced work with the agency in August 2017, reviewed the original investigation into the matter following concerns raised by Mrs Woodford's family on the program Australian Story last month.

Mr Campbell said SafeWork SA should not have told Mrs Woodford's family that her death was not work-related.

"Based on the evidence available at the time, the finding that this death was not a workplace fatality was incorrect," he said.

Mr Campbell met with Mrs Woodford's family late last week to apologise for SafeWork's handling of this matter.

"I also regret any frustration this may have generated in the broader community," he said.

Mr Campbell said SafeWork SA has received new information relating to Mrs Woodford's death that has led to the agency reopening its investigation into the matter.

He also said SafeWork SA is undertaking a range of measures to ensure this error is not repeated.

"We have begun a comprehensive retraining program for our current staff and are recruiting to increase our investigative capability," he said.

"I am also looking at how SafeWork SA can identify whether there are other cases that need to be reassessed in light of this matter."

As the matter is now subject to investigation, further comment cannot be made at this point.

19 March 2018

Workplace fatality

We are investigating an incident that occurred where a worker has been fatally injured when working with a tilt-tray tow truck. It is believed the worker became trapped between the tray and headboard of the tow truck when the tray was being returned to its home position after a vehicle had been unloaded. Investigations are continuing.

General safety information:

SafeWork SA reminds everyone about the importance of working safely with or near vehicles with moveable trays and decks, and ensuring safe systems at work are in place for loading, and unloading the vehicle.

The need to enter spaces between fixed areas and moveable trays and decks of a vehicle must be eliminated or minimised and these spaces must not be used as general storage areas. Equipment must be inspected to ensure it is in proper working order and there are no operating controls or components which may be operated inadvertently or catch clothing. Adequate information, instruction and training must be provided to all operators of vehicles with moveable trays and decks. All safety and control functions must be clearly marked.

Workplace safety is everyone's responsibility.

22 February 2018

Workplace fatality

We are investigating an incident where a worker has been fatally injured in Port Lincoln. It is understood that the worker was struck by a stillage during the forklift unloading process from the delivery truck.
General safety information:

SafeWork SA reminds everyone about the importance of having safe systems of work in place for loading and unloading operations.
A hazard identification must be undertaken prior to the commencement of loading or unloading operations, and safe systems of work must be implemented to ensure the safety of all workers in the vicinity of the work being undertaken. 

If you work with forklifts, read our High Risk Work Guide to Forklift safety that offers practical guidance for both businesses and workers on managing risks related to forklifts.
Workplace safety is everyone's responsibility.

21 February 2018

Workplace fatality

We are investigating an incident where a worker has been fatally injured when using an Orteco HD 1000 hydraulic pile driver crawler. A part has dislodged from the mast and struck the worker.  The plant was being used to install supports for solar panels at the Bungala Solar Photovoltaic (PV) project near Port Augusta, South Australia.

SafeWork SA reminds everyone that plant and equipment must only be used in accordance with manufacturer's specifications and that all hydraulic pile drivers are adequately maintained and inspected. Operators must be provided with adequate information, instruction and training and consulted in Safe Work Method statements/Job Safety Analysis used for tasks operating the plant.

Pre-operational inspection, including visual inspection and functional testing, should be completed by the operator before the commencement of each work shift and noted in the logbook.

The WHS legislation requires a person who conducts a business or undertaking to manage all work health and safety risks, so the health and safety of workers and other people are not affected by an organisation's conduct.