Why are farms still unsafe?

The start of School Holidays is always a good time to issue reminders of the risks associated with farms, beaches and wherever holidaymakers go. The Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF), recently reinvigorated in its occupational health and safety (OHS) efforts, has released a new safety booklet – “Child Safety on Farms – A practical guide for …

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The myth of “correct lifting technique” persists

In 2017 Work Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ) released this advice about reducing the physical risks associated with manual handling: “The research evidence shows that providing lifting technique training is not effective in minimising the risk of injury from manual tasks.” So why is “correct lifting technique” still being included in safety procedures and Safe …

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Farmers want quad bikes…….

The debate over the safety of quad bikes on farms continues but it is increasingly one-sided. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and workplace safety advocates continue to hold the line on the need to install operator protection devices (OPDs) to all quad bikes being sold in Australia. Farmers, often supported by commercial interests, …

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OHS is often about broken promises

Occupational health and safety (OHS) is often about promises.  Employees trust their bosses to provide them with a job and the employer promises to provide a workplace that is as safe as possible.  There are also contractual policies which formalise OHS relationships between client and contractor.  But OHS is more often about those more personal …

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Could your company manage an embarrassing workplace injury?

Every man is aware of his penis and scrotum from a very early age. Male genitals do not feature often in discussions about occupational health and safety (OHS) but there was a workplace incident in the United States around 1970 that gained considerable attention but not really from the OHS perspective.  I have always thought … Continue reading “Could your company manage an embarrassing workplace injury?”

You can learn so much more from a Near Miss – Interview with James Wood

James Wood was injured during work on an Australian mine site in 1985 resulting in spinal cord damage and other complications. For a long time, James has been telling his story to Australian workers for them to understand the risks they face, primarily, at work. I caught up with James on a very cold morning …

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Psychology, Leadership and Jonathan Lincolne

Episode 47 of Andrew Barrett’s Safety On Tap podcast consisted of an interview with  Jonathan Lincolne of Pockets of Brilliance.  Several comments are of note. Psychology Around the 47 minute mark, Lincolne is asked about the level of psychological knowledge that the occupational health and safety (OHS) professionals should possess.  Lincolne refreshingly describes himself as a …

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