SafeWork SA has filed charges against Inghams Enterprises Pty Ltd after a worker was struck and killed by reversing truck and trailer (click here to read more).

Collisions involving vehicles are the greatest cause of workplace deaths in Australia making up over 41% of work-related fatalities and the transport, postal and warehousing industry are responsible for over one third of these deaths.

What are the lessons to be learned here?

In previous articles we looked at the responsibility workplace safety laws place on “Senior Officers” to ensure they have identified hazards and put the necessary controls in place and traffic related hazards are no exception.

Every workplace that has interaction between pedestrians, mobile plant and vehicles needs an up-to date traffic management plan. The greater the risk, the more comprehensive the plan should be such as in warehousing facilities and loading docks.

Your Safety Partners together with AMP Capital presented the results of a traffic management safety project undertaken at loading docks across Australia in shopping centres owned by AMP Capital (at the Safety in Action Conference in 2012) which demonstrated a significant reduction in the interaction between people and vehicles through some simple traffic management measures which can be applied to any workplace.

Tips for establishing good pedestrian and vehicular separation

  1. Engage an experienced health and safety professional to observe and study traffic hazards on your site(s)
  2. In conjunction with your safety consultant, develop a visual traffic management plan
  3. If you are unsure about the effectiveness of the proposed controls in the plan, install temporary controls such as using bollards or temporary line marking before installing “hard controls”
  4. Observe the effectiveness of the temporary controls to separate pedestrians, vehicles and mobile plant and modify the plan accordingly
  5. Using appropriate contractors, install the hard controls in accordance with plan.

If you have a high frequency of pedestrian vehicle and mobile plant interaction at your sites, don’t hesitate to contact us for advice on how to reduce risk.

Your Safety Partners have been assisting companies develop, implement and monitor traffic management plans for over a decade.