Falling objects can deliver a hefty blow to the head, resulting in injury or even death warns a safety authority.
This is why WorkSafe is cracking down on companies that fail to control the risk of falling objects, with a round of almost 1000 inspections throughout the next three weeks.
Top targets will be construction companies operating in the industrial, residential and commercial sectors.
According to WorkSafe statistics, more than 860 construction workers have been injured since 2010 by falling objects. Injuries are commonly caused by falling building materials such as bricks, tiles, concrete and timber.
WorkSafe says simple steps to avoid falling objects include securing loose building materials and tools at building sites, and could make the difference between life and death.
“Each year WorkSafe investigates serious injuries and countless near-misses involving falling objects at construction sites,” WorkSafe health and safety executive director Marnie Williams says.
“We know that even a small tool or a bolt falling from a building site can cause life-threatening injuries. That’s why every builder must assess their site throughout the day and identify materials or objects that could fall in or outside of the site boundaries.”
Materials placed close to the edge of an incomplete upper level or left unsecured pose a very high risk.
“Materials that are blown from structures by wind or tools and equipment knocked or dropped from ledges not only pose a risk to workers but the general public in the streets below,” Williams says.
“Any object, no matter how small, can be deadly if it falls from a height so builders need to constantly assess the work being undertaken to ensure these kinds of materials are secured.”