The Senate Has Rejected Legislation To Re-Establish A Building Industry Watchdog

703980-5c683fc2-2f47-11e4-bf64-1d189c635373Following the Senate’s rejection of the bill to restore the building industry watchdog,Australians could be going to the polls.

As early as July 2nd, we may have to vote after the federal government was handed the trigger for a double-dissolution election on Monday night after the legislation to reinstore the Australian Building Construction Commission was rejected by the Senate again.

The bills were defeated 36-34.

The prime minister has promised to use the second rejection of the bill to push for a July 2nd election. He says the reinstatement of the watchdog is crucial to stamp out misconduct after the royal commission report into union corruption last year.

 

Read more at http://www.skynews.com.au/news/top-stories/2016/04/18/double-dissolution-likely-as-senate-votes.html

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Protecting Your Health from Work Stress

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Stress at work is causing health problems among workers, especially stress that goes on continuously and without being addressed.

It’s up to employers and workers to manage stress but you’ll first need to identify the signs of a stressful work life.

The high risk nature of construction work can also add stress to workers. These are some of the common stressors among workers,

  1. Excessive job demands.
  2. Lack of control over your work.
  3. Lack of clarity
  4. Job insecurity
  5. Difficult relationships
  6. Bullying and discrimination

 

Read more at http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-04-13/workplace-stress-is-it-affecting-your-health/7319276

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Workplace Health and Safety Programs Examined

roof plumb

Studies show that properly designed wellness programs can deliver significant benefits with average rate of return of between 2:1 and 5:1 for every dollar spent, so why are so many of these programs not delivering significant results?

While companies have good intentions when introducing these wellness programs, they fail to ensure the programs are designed with the entire work process and environment taken into consideration, therefore the wellness programs outcomes can be negated by other factors in the workplace.

A good example is a workplace wellness program that helps workers stop smoking but doesn’t take into consideration toxic fumes and chemicals that workers are exposed to each day.

Find out more at: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-04-18/workplace-wellness-programs-do-they-work/7330528

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Man Impaled During Home Renovations

roof plumb

Source: roofplumber3.blogspot.com

Be particularly cautious when working from heights as this is a major cause of injury and death among construction workers in Australia.

The latest incident took place at a home on the NSW Mid North Coast involving a man in his forties.

The man fell from a ladder and became impaled by a star picket.

He was treated on the scene before being taken to a local hospital. The man was then rushed to Gold Coast Hospital for further treatment. He remains in a stable condition in hospital, but he is one of the lucky ones- the Sunday afternoon incident could have been fatal.

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/04/man-hospitalised-impaled-star-picket/#.VxVMUvl97IV

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Shorter Construction Time with Modular Construction

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The latest trend in construction methods that’s gaining steadily in popularity across Australia is modular construction.

This type of construction is quicker and more cost effective because the components of the building are made in a factory, off-site somewhere and transported to the site to be assembled.

One example of modular construction in action is the Adelaide United training facility at Ridley Reserve by Ausco Modular.

The project was completed in just 3 months, and at a cost of just $700,000.  Read more at http://www.architectureanddesign.com.au/suppliers/ausco-modular/modular-construction-methods-slash-timeframes-to-l

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Interesting Sydney Time-lapse

Watch this video of the hotel development at Sydney’s famous Kings Cross entertainment district.

The area is undergoing major redevelopment and this hotel is one of the construction sites in the area at the moment.

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Tool Review Video

What are your criteria for a good impact driver?

Watch this video to see if the Bosch 10.8V Impact Driver meets these requirements.

This helpful review will hopefully help you make the right choice.

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Bridge Collapse in India Results in 3 Arrests

india bridge

Since the overpass collapse in Kolkata, India on Friday, 26 people were killed and 3 arrests were made.

Three employees of the Indian construction firm building an overpass that collapsed have been charged with murder, conspiracy, attempted murder and mischief and if found guilty are facing life in prison or a death sentence.

A section of the bridge, about 100 metres long crashed down onto the street below on Friday, crushing pedestrians walking by and vehicles below.

The accused appeared in court recently and the 3, including one senior employee and an engineer have been remanded into police custody for 9 days.  See more at http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-04-02/indian-authorities-arrest-three-more-over-bridge-collapse/7294848

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Worksafe WA Inspectors Hone In On Construction Safety

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Construction Site

All construction employers in the Perth CBD area need to ensure they are meeting their workplace health and safey requirements as WorkSafeWA rolls out its latest inspection program.

Work from heights safety and electrical safety will be the focus of the program. Inspectors will also be checking that all workers have the necessary induction cards and high risk licences.

All workers must be in possession of a valid White Card. This mandatory accreditation can be gained by completing a simple online course.

Source:http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/04/inspection-program-focus-construction-safety/#.VwL23vl97IV

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Avoiding Stress Important For Your Brain

Learning to manage stress is important because while stress can be a good motivator, too much stress can be damaging to your mental and physical well being.

One of the worst impacts of stress is on the brain. This video shows you how your brain is affected by stress.

 

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Plumbers, Don’t Make these Mistakes

plumber

If you’re a plumber, you should read an article written on ContractorMag.com about the 14 fails of plumbing. Not only will it make you a better tradie, it will help you run your business better.

Some of the mistakes mentioned include:

  1. Being the low price leader
  2. Charging for time and materials
  3. Plumbing fast
  4. Eliminate idle time
  5. Never stray from the old way
  6. Only market by word of mouth
  7. Pre-judge your customers
  8. Forego employee uniforms
  9. Don’t hire staff
  10. Use family for free

Go to http://contractormag.com/marketing/14-fails-plumbing-dont-be-bad-plumbing-contractor for more.

 

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That Explains What the ABCC Does

traffic control

Construction Site

Malcolm Turnbull has threatened a double dissolution election if the Senate doesn’t agree to a contentious bill, restoring the Australian Building and Construction Commission.

The ABCC was the watchdog in control of the construction industry established by the Howard government in 2005. The commission monitored the sector and enforced civil workplace laws such as restrictions on unlawful industrial action and industrial threats.

The new Labor government in 2012 gave way to the Fair Work Building and Construction (FWBC) which also had restricted powers.

With the possibility of the ABCC coming back into power, the CFMEU has opposed the reinstatement saying the industry is being unfairly singled out.  Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/explainer-what-is-the-australian-building-and-construction-commission-20160321-gnn8nm.html#ixzz441Zes98b

 

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The Danger of Asbestos For Building Workers

While most of us have the good sense to stay away from asbestos materials, what if we were unknowingly e100x100xasbestos_hazard_thumb1.jpg.pagespeed.ic.bAtcdjtATcxposed?

With cheap Chinses imports containing asbestos, putting construction workers and homeowners at risk, its important to ensure we aren’t in danger.

According to media reports of asbestos ontaining materials being found on more than 50 sites across the country.

Let’s hope with the crackdown that builders realise the risks of importing cheap asbestos materials.  Source: https://sourceable.net/imported-asbestos-creating-extreme-danger-for-workers/#

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Suicide Scourge Among Australian Tradies

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Source: www.storypick.com

A topic that really needs to be addressed in the construction industry, but is often swept under the rug is depression and the scourge of suicide among workers.

The hard physical labour and often lack of job security are 2 of the main reasons why construction workers are so vulnerable, another is the typically male dominated culture which is not conducive to talking about one’s feelings of depression.

Australia’s tradies are at a high risk of depression and suicide due to a number of factors and circumstances.

Shockingly a construction worker takes his/her own life in Australia every 2 days. Suicide among construction workers, mostly men aged 15 to 24 is more than twice as high as other young males, according to the Australian Institute for Suicide Research and Prevention, and is obviously an issue that deserves alot more attention to address.

Read more at http://www.theage.com.au/good-weekend/hard-times-the-suicide-scourge-among-australias-tradies-20160218-gmxtcx.html#ixzz422ilEZAJ

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Man Suffers Injury After Falling at Work Site

man injured

Source: CourierMail.com.au

A 38 year old Queensland worker was rushed to hospital after he fell 6 metres off a ladder at a construction site in Darra.

The man was working on the ladder at a Valance street building site when he fell onto a building platform.

Fire crews were brought in to ensure the man was extricated safely from the platform.

Despite neck pain, the man was fortunate he didnt suffer any serious injuries, because even falls from a relatively low height can be serious and this fall was 6 metres.

 

 Source: http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/man-injured-in-workplace-fall-at-darra/news-story/e9a3b80c0cd22fa17a8927774efd9600
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Could Too Much Attention be given to Safety?

safety meetingIn our efforts to prioritise safety we commonly stress the topic so hard that workers become somewhat complacent to these safety discussions.

Alot of people end up dimissing the safety part of the meeting because they don’t see it as having much to do with productivity.

This problem was recently discussed in a blog SafetyatWorkBlog and ways to combat this obstacle to promoting a safe work culture was also covered.

Read more at http://safetyatworkblog.com/2016/03/04/safety-is-the-first-agenda-item-but-the-last-consideration/

 

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Tasmanian Construction Boom Needs Thousands More Workers

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While construction is contracting in some states, Tasmania’s construction boom rolls on. And now the Master Builders Association is saying that thousands of interstate workers may be needed to help maintain productivity in the state’s construction sector.

The state has a growing number of construction projects, many of them government funded which is expected to outstrip local labour supply.

Master Builders believe as many as 4000 interstate workers may be needed to fill the gaps.

The good news is that workers who are already in possession of a Construction Safety White Card, will not need to redo the training if they plan on moving to Tasmania to help fill shortages.

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-29/thousands-more-workers-needed-for-tasmania’s-construction-boom/7206138

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Cladding Situation Getting Out of Hand

cladding

Source: Sourceable.net.au

A leader in the strata community in Australia has spoken out against the mounting concerns about combustible cladding in large scale apartment complexes.

Strata Community Australia Chief Executive Officer Ken Henshaw described the situation as “disgraceful” and said a federal response to the problem is needed.

Reports reveal that as many as 2500 high rise buildings in Sydney and half the high rise towers in Melbourne could contain flammable and non-compliant cladding imported from China.

Although we are aware of the problem in Melbourne and Sydney, its likely the true extent of the problem nationally is much greater and widespread than we realise.

Read more at: https://sourceable.net/disgraceful-cladding-situation-demands-federal-response/#

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Bill Pushes for Tougher Sanctions for Negligent Employers

Paramedics3One South Australian politician wants reforms introduced to improve workplace safety in the state through corporate criminal responsibility.

If an employer’s negligence or indifference leads to the death of a worker, they could be fined up to $1 million or jailed for up to 20 years, under the industrial manslaughter bill reforms.

Greens MLC Tammy Franks says the main objective of the bill is to ensure that culpable employers are held responsible for any action or inaction that leads to the death of a worker.

Read more at http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/02/bill-aims-push-tougher-sanction-workplace-safety-negligence-employers-resulting-death/#.VtwfvPl97IV

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Remember The Importance of Safety

roof plumb

Source: roofplumber3.blogspot.com

A new public awareness campaign launched by WorkSafe Victoria aims to show how serious the impact of injuries are in the workplace.

The campaign “Reallly Bad Day” shows the consequences for workers, employers, businesses as well the workplace when a serious injury takes place.

Victorian employers must prioritise workplace safety and recognise the consequences of workplace fatalities and injuries.

As WorkSafe points out, many employers are doing the right thing when it comes to safety but there are also too many fatalities and serious injuries happening evey year.

 

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/02/safety-campaign-aims-show-impact-serious-injuries-workplace/#.VstVm_l97IU

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Lego Home Fits Effortlessly into Nature

If you want a home that’s quick, easy and affordable to construct, this lego home may be the one for you. It’s esspecially popular amongst nature lovers because of its “green” design.

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Compromised Safety on Taiwan Highrises Due to Makeshift Building Materials

There are concerns that the building collapse in Taiwan following an earthquake was related to the use of makeshift building materials including empty paint cans used to reinforce pillars. Watch the video for more.

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Worker Suffers Fatal Crushing Injury in Victoria

tree

Source: redtreetimes.com

There have been so many workers killed in the line of duty this year, all across Australia and in Victoria.

In one incident, a 60 year old man was killed after being crushed by a tree in Central Victoria.

On Saturday afternoon the man was cutting up a felled tree when the tree rolled and trapped him.

The man was killed instantly.

Paramedics arrived at the scene around 6pm but the man was already dead. The incident is being investigated.

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/02/man-dies-crushed-tree-central-victoria/#.VsnTMfl97IW

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Time-lapse Video of Stadium Going Up

This cool time-lapse is an example of how invaluable cranes are to construction. This massive stadium was built for NFL teams The Atlanta Falcons as their new home stadium.

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Terrible Workplace Accident Severs Man’s Arm

rah

Source: abc.net.au

There have been so many workplace accidents this year, with 15 fatal incidents taking place.

In one of the accidents a 29 year old man was seriously injured by a piece of equipment on a worksite in Bayswater.

Paramedics arrived at the Clune Street site around 4pm and the man was rushed to Royal Perth Hospital in a critical condition after his arm was severed during the incident.

WorkSafe inspectors are investigating the incident.

There have already been 15 workplace fatalities in Australia this year. It’s obvious we need to pay more attention to workplace safety.

Read more at http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/02/mans-arm-severed-workplace-incident/#.Vq_oHrJ97IV

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Time-lapse Construction Video

This time-lapse construction video shows us a “green” building going up. Its interesting to watch cranes and heavy vehicles and equipment at work.

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So This is How to Lay Bricks with A Robot

You can either fear construction technology or you can embrace it. This is just one of the examples of construction technology aiding in masonry work. Creators say its meant to work alongside bricklayers and not to replace them. Let’s watch and see how it works.

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Man Killed by Crane in The Big Apple

A massive crane collapse in Tribeca in New York City last week was caught on video.

One man was killed as the crane fell onto his car and 3 others were injured.

Watch the video to see how it went down.

 

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Video Shows Perth’s Elizabeth Quay Going Up

Elizabth Quay has been under construction since 2013. In this interesting time-lapse video we see how far construction has come since then.

 

 

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Heat Stress Warning for WA Issued

heat

Source: www.dpchallenge.com

Summer is in full swing and as we return to work, employers and workers have been warned to guard against the effects of the high temperatures.

WorkSafe WA is leading the call for safety in the summer months with its Commissioner Lex McCulloch reminding employers and workers of the need to take extra care to avoid heat stress and heat stroke.

McCulloch said those working in heatwave conditions, both indoors and outdoors are at risk of heat stress and in extreme cases, heat stroke which can prove fatal.

Employers have a responsibility under workplace safety laws to provide a working environment in which workers aren’t exposed to hazards and this includes protecting them from the effects of extreme heat exposure.

 

 

Go to http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/02/worksafe-wa-issues-heat-stress-warning/#.VreHdPl97IU for more.

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Thanks to Construction, SA Job Market Doing Well

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Construction Site

The South Australian government is attempting to combat the high jobless rate in the state by announcing a range of infrastructure projects to get underway shortly.

According to figures the SA jobless rate rose to 7.3 per cent in November and 7.2 per cent in December but the state government believes $6 billion worth of construction work planned to begin soon will aid in tackling this high unemployment rate.

The state’s infrastructure minister Stephen Mullighan said people who had lost their jobs in the car industry could seek employment in the construction sector.

The government says road works are a key employment opportunity in the state.

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-14/sa-jobless-rate-falls-marginally-unemployment-rate/7088454

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Idiots on Ladders Revealed in Pictures

A British construction competition with a difference shows us the stupidest ways to use ladders

ladder mistake one

Source: Construction Enquirer

Although we would never make any of these mistakes, it’s important that all workers are trained on ladder use. As these pictures prove, we should never assume people know how to use a ladder safely.

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Source: Construction Enquirer

Source: http://www.constructionenquirer.com/2016/01/21/idiots-on-ladders-winner-revealed-3/

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This is Why You Should Wear a Hard Hat

Hard hats are a non-negotiable part of every construction workers Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and for obvious reasons however the number of workers who become complacent towards wearing hardhats and PPE in general are alarming.

If you need some help choosing a good hard hat, watch this video.

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A High Rise Building Construction Recorded

This time-lapse video shows the construction of a high rise building recently. Its interesting to watch the cranes at work and track how construction develops.

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Women Crashes Car into Building Site

car crash

Source: HeraldSun.com.au

It’s a good thing construction sites were closed over the last few days or a crash in East Melbourne could have turned out a lot worse.

A woman managed to escape unharmed after crashing her car into a construction site and landing on a scaffolding, 2 metres in the air.

The 40 something woman was able to exit the vehicle uninjured and walk to safety and because the site was closed, no one else was injured.

Source: http://www.9news.com.au/national/2016/01/25/14/52/car-crashes-into-construction-site-in-burwood-east

 

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Grenade Found During Construction in Cairns

grenade

Source: CairnsPost.com.au

Construction workers on a site in Cairns on Old Smithfield Road stumbled on a hand grenade thought to have been left behind after World War 2.

According to reports, builders made the find while laying foundations for a new house last week when they happened to dig up the relic from WWII. The grenade was probably buried for around 70 years.

Police were called to the site to identify the grenade and construct a safety barrier around it. The navy were then called in to remove the device and dispose of it.

The find is not a surprise, with Cairns police Sen Constable Russell Parker saying the area was a “hive of military activity” during WW2.

Source: http://www.cairnspost.com.au/news/cairns/cairns-construction-workers-find-ww2-grenade-during-house-build/news-story/05eff06c6ba09b697b2414b65aae33f9

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Video Highlights Benefits of Returning To Work After An Injury

Injuries on construction sites can range from very minor to serious and even debilitating, which is why returning to work after an injury is different for everyone. This video tells the story of one such worker and highlights the benefits of returning to work as soon as possible after an injury.

 

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Proper Ladder Usage Advice

Bunnings recently posted this helpful video with advice on how to use a ladder correctly. Although this seems like common sense, its always good to have a recap of what we should be doing.

 

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University of Queensland Unhappy About Obstructed View of Historic Building

CUSTOMS HOUSE

Source: Abc.net.au

Owners of the heritage listed Customs House are taking the Brisbane City Council to court for approving construction of a 47 storey building next door to the historic building.

A $375 million development is being built next door to Customs House which the University says contradicts the council’s own planning scheme.

The planning scheme introduced a 25 metre setback requirement to preserve the views of Customs House when seen from Queen Street.

The development would also lead to a need for the partial removal of a fig tree more than a century old and damage to a historic stone retaining wall.

 

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-12/university-of-queensland-take-brisbane-city-council-to-court/7084242

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This is what it’s like on a High Rise Building Site

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Source: Abc.net.au

If you’ve ever wanted to experience life high above the ground, then perhaps the life of a crane operator or part of the crane crew is for you.

This article from Abc.net.au looks into a day in the life of these construction crew members on one of Melbourne’s highest building sites.

crane-load-data

Source: Abc.net.au

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-12/the-high-rise-crane-crew/7036630

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Horrendous Construction Equipment Fails

Here are some horrendous examples of construction accidents and heavy equipment fails.

Let’s hope we never experience any of these accidents on our worksites.

 

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World’s Largest Hydraulic Excavator

Watch this monster of a machine in action, clearing the way for construction to begin.

How cool is this?

 

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Watch A High Rise Building Under Construction

Watching a high rise building going up is so interesting, especially for construction workers who can spot what they’re doing wrong, what they would do differently, what they can learn etc. Let’s see what we learn from this one.

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Returning To Work After An Injury

While we often focus on the prevention of accidents on the worksite, the sad truth is that accidents can and will happen. We need to encourage people, especially those who suffer serious injury to get the help they need and get back to work. Watch the video for more,

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Watch this Crane Fail Compilation

Watching cranes in action is almost as fun as watching them fail. Let’s see what happens in this construction fail compilation.

 

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Surprising End to Construction Worker Disagreement

A man was thrown from a building after a disagreement between 2 workers got out of hand. One worker throws the other off the building.

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Watch A Sports Centre Getting Built

Here’s an interesting construction time-lapse video showing a sports centre getting built.

 

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Improving Work Safety in the Most Dangerous Sectors

5543464-3x2-700x467Construction has been identified by Workplace Health and Safety Queensland as one of the 7 industries requiring immediate attention to improve safety.

Greater safety efforts are needed in the civil construction and construction trades industries if we are to see workplace injuries overall going down in the state.

The construction industry is responsible for a significant number of workplace compensation claims and authorities are urging immediate action to keep workers in this industry safe, as they deserve to be.

We need to look at the areas where injuries are happening and address them, Workplace Health and Safety Queensland said.

Find out more at http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/12/key-industry-sectors-identified-requiring-targeted-efforts-improve-work-safety/#.VoHJrfl97IV

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Mental Health In The Workplace

roof plumb

Source: roofplumber3.blogspot.com

The mental health of your workers should always be a priority, even as much as you prioritise their physical health and safety. If this were being done, suicide wouldn’t be as great a concern in the construction industry as it is.

One in five Australian workers suffer from mental health issues at some time in their lives and the competitive working environment we function in doesn’t help. Other issues such as bullying and discrimination only increase the problem.

According to HeadsUp, there are key indicators of a healthy workplace and their are factors that contribute to an unhealthy work environment mentally. To learn more about them go to http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/12/indicators-mentally-healthy-workplace/#.VoHGnPl97IV

 

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This is Why Crane Operators Need a High Risk Licence

Some people’s worst nightmare may be other’s dream job. Once you watch this video you’ll understand why crane operators need high risk licences.

 

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