Teenage Worker Injured in Construction Incident

SafeWork Australia has recently warned that young workers can be at a risk of workplace injury due to their lack of experience as well as their immaturity. The authority is emphasising through a campaign aimed at young workers that they need to be supervised even more cautiously than other new workers and trained adequately.

Due to the increased risk that young workers are placed in, Safe Work Australia has launched its Young Workers Strategy.

An accident which took place in Oakville, Ontario is an example of what can happen when young people aren’t properly supervised or trained to work on a construction site. The 17 year old boy was hospitalised after the accident which place on the Oakville construction site.

According to an article on the local news site BramptonGuardian.com the boy was assisting in the construction of a trench when a collapse occurred. The post explained:

Police said the male was helping to build a trench on the side of the road near Dundas Road and Third Line when a wall collapsed, trapping him.

Ornge air ambulance attended the scene, but the teen was taken by land ambulance to a local hospital.

The extent of the male’s injuries is unclear.

Police said the Ministry of Labour has been contacted as is protocol.

Source: http://www.bramptonguardian.com/news-story/4871026-male-17-taken-to-hospital-after-oakville-construction-site-accident/

This incident highlights how important it is for workers in construction to be trained prior to beginning work in this sometimes dangerous industry.

In Australia this prior training takes the form of The White Card course. This training ensures that young workers are familiarised with the hazards associated with construction work, such as trenches before they begin working on this hazardous sites. It is a requirement nationally that all workers undergo this training and obtain a White Card as proof of doing so.

This vulnerability of young workers is why SafeWork Australia has launched the Young Workers Strateg – because young people are often less aware of the risks and lack the maturity to cope well on a high risk work site.

According to SafeWork Australia these young workers often also demonstrate the following which make them vulnerable,

They may also be:

developing their skills, competencies and physical capabilities

unaware of their rights and responsibilities

unaware of the duties of others regarding workplace health and safety

unfamiliar with appropriate workplace behaviours

reluctant to make requests, ask questions or speak out about problems

overly keen to please and make a good impression, and

over-confident in their capabilities.

Source: http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/swa/australian-strategy/case-studies/pages/safety-for-young-workers-in-sa

According to statistics from the Australian Bureau of Statistics there were 54,458 women and 54,864 men aged between 15 and 24 years in South Australia’s workforce, so those employers who think this issue is not an important one are wrong.

The majority of the young men employed between these ages were employed in the high risk industries, of which construction is one. That is why SafeWork SA is attempting to raise awareness of the issues surrounding these young men and women. They are particularly concerned with providing young workers with accessible information on workplace hazards, safety procedures and workplace rights. These are issues that are covered by the White Card Course as well.

For more information visit SafeWork SA’s website

Source: http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/swa/australian-strategy/case-studies/pages/safety-for-young-workers-in-sa


Posted by Construction Safety News Admin
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