Unless we change how we’re managing health and safety, at least 13 construction workers will lose their lives whilst at work this year.
Do you want that to be you, a member of your staff, a contractor or a visitor to your site? No — of course you don’t!
One fatality is one too many, and whilst you can’t put a value on a human life, you can imagine the impact that a serious accident or injury has on day-to-day activities and how you manage your business and, ultimately, your business’ success.
It’s been reported that at least 70% of self-employed businesses that close down do so at least in part because of serious injury. * Nearly a third of these companies were in the construction industry.
As so many residential builders will already know, as a self-employed businessman you are critical to the ongoing success of the business and, if you’re not there or able to actively participate in the day-to-day activities then there’s a strong possibility that your business’ efficiency will deteriorate, deadlines won’t be achieved and, ultimately, the success of your business will falter.
Free training for residential and civil contractors and allied trades
One way of ensuring this doesn’t happen to you is to have a basic health and safety plan — and ACC is assisting with this. Health and safety training for a Workplace Safety Discount is a simple way of incorporating four key health and safety elements into your business.
You can achieve a 10% discount on the work component of your ACC levies for three years from the date of lodging your application and self-assessment with ACC, backdated to the beginning of the tax year.
The course is free for residential and civil contractors, and allied trades who are self-employed, have an annual payroll of $450,000 or less and employ no more than 10 full-time people.
You’ll need to verify your eligibility to attend the course by going to the ACC web site (www.acc.co.nz). Check that your Classification Unit is on the list of those eligible.
When and where?
Site Safe is running courses throughout the country on a regular basis. At the four hour course you’ll come away better able to implement systems around:
• Hazard management — identifying, assessing and controlling significant hazards is essential to prevent injuries. Good hazard management requires a proactive approach, staff involvement and regular reviews of the effectiveness of the controls.
• Incident and accident investigation — it’s vital that incidents and accidents be thoroughly investigated to ensure hazards are identified, controlled and made part of your regular hazard management process.
• Emergency preparedness — when an emergency occurs it’s too late to make new plans. Well-practised plans will help keep all people safe on site, should an emergency occur.
• Information, training and supervision — all people working on the job need to know about the hazards they are likely to face. Inductions, relevant training and knowing when a staff member is safe to work unsupervised are key aspects to running a smart business.
After the course, complete the application form and self-assessment and submit it to ACC. Then start saving 10% on the work component of your ACC levies — for three years!
Check out www.sitesafe.org.nz to see when the next course is being run in your area or, alternatively, contact the Site Safe administrator in the area closest to you:
• Northland/Auckland/Waikato/Bay of Plenty, 09 634 4735,
• Wellington/Taranaki/Hawkes Bay/Manawatu/Taranaki: 04 04 495 9873, firstname.lastname@example.org
• South Island: 03 343 7110, email@example.com
* Source: ACC