The Importance Of Safety Standards On Construction Sites In Australia
By mid-June 2014, 78 workers in Australia have been killed from work related causes. Five of those came from the construction industry alone. In 2013 of the 186 people who died from work related causes, 17 of them came from the construction industry. Many more die from using poorly constructed buildings. While there seems to be an improvement in 2014, the year is just halfway gone. The work related accidents and fatalities are significant enough to warrant a look at building safety codes and their importance.
The Effect of Work Related Accidents and Deaths
Work related deaths and accidents in the construction industry affect all the stakeholders within the industry. Deaths and injuries of building residents also affect the victims and their loved ones.
- Accidents and deaths related to work and residency within the construction industry are costly to the economy. Compensation has to be paid, insurance premiums skyrocket and people lose main income earners for their household.
- Deaths and accidents are demoralizing. Most injuries tend to be causes by failure of the management to observe building safety. This demoralizes the other workers who feel that the employers do not care.
- Accidents and deaths within the construction industry affect the quality of work done on buildings by the demoralized workers, which in turn endangers the people who will use them later. The residents of poorly constructed building in turn lose trust in Australian builders and may look elsewhere for the services they provide. Everyone loses when that happens.
Prevention Measures for the Construction Industry
Both work related deaths and accidents as well as injuries and fatalities arising from residency in poorly constructed buildings can be prevented. That is why it is important for all major stakeholders in the construction industry to observe the latest building codes instituted by the relevant regulatory bodies. Doing so will help save lives and help prevent unnecessary tragedy.
- The fire code for building must be observed. This will include having the necessary exist points to allow building residents to escape in the event of a fire. It also includes installing fire suppression equipment to deal with fire when it starts to prevent it from spreading. Equipment to detect fires should also be installed, in addition to exist signage.
- All electrical systems should comply with the electrical codes set by the relevant Australian bodies. This is meant to reduce the chances of overheating and ignition of electrical fires.
- All buildings should be constructed professionally according to the right blueprint. These buildings should be made with high quality materials to prevent them from falling apart within a very short time.
- Buildings should comply with the occupancy limits set by the regulatory bodies within their locales. When residents exceed the maximum number set, they are likely to put a strain on all the inbuilt systems like electricity, which may end up causing overheating and hence fires. In addition, too many people within a building may be hard to evacuate in the event that a fire emergency arises.
- All employers in the construction industry should ensure that their employees are protected from falling from great heights by providing the right equipment. Working hours should be regulated to prevent fatigue, which in turn causes loss of focus, something that may cause injuries and fatalities.
A Final Thought
Building safety codes are created for a reason. The Australian construction industry still has room for improvement to safeguard both workers and building residents from injuries and deaths.
Don’t risk your life or the life of others.