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Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters

Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters

Alert24 - Safeguard Update

The regulator reports

The regulator reports
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New Zealand

The three major risks to which WorkSafe staff are exposed are driving, aggressive or threatening behaviour, and psychological harm from traumatic events and work-related stress.

This information is disclosed in WorkSafe’s annual report for 2015-16 (4.4MB PDF file) published towards the end of last year, which says the risks were identified as part of the agency’s participation in the pilot of the Safety Star Rating programme. In response, the regulator has strengthened its near-miss reporting and staff engagement and participation, particularly among its H&S reps.

The report says WorkSafe has developed a strategy for working with Māori, Maruiti 2025, which focuses initially on building internal capability before seeking to work in partnership with iwi and other Māori groups.

Statistically, the report notes that 17 of the 56 fatalities in 2015/16 were in the agricultural sector, far outstripping the next highest sector (construction, with seven). While the fatality and serious injury rates have been decreasing slightly, the severity level of injuries – those that require more than a week off work – has been rising.

In the high hazard space, WorkSafe was notified of 126 dangerous precursor events, up from 82 in the previous year, of which 80 were in petroleum/geothermal and 46 in extractives. However, 99% of these events were handled satisfactorily by the operators.

In a different report – relating to the first quarter of the 2016-17 year – WorkSafe gives a detailed account of its activities, including expanded use of a Company Risk Model to help inspectors focus on high-risk companies. The quarterly Household Labour Force Survey, run by Statistics NZ, included for its December 2016 iteration some initial questions on work-related health. Longer term, WorkSafe is working with the Ministry of Health to see if it can include measures of work-related health (WRH) in the 2018/19 National Health Status Survey.

“The inclusion of WRH questions would for the first time provide national data on occupational disease and injury in New Zealand and allow for international comparison,” the report notes.

Work is also under way to provide ACC with the injury mechanism data that WorkSafe produces from ACC’s own work-related claims data, with the aim of developing a common view of the causes of work-related injury.



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From Alert24 - Safeguard Update

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