Construction Sites Targeted That Put Workers At Risk


Focusing on the importance of workplace safety for construction companies, officials in New Zealand are making a concerted effort to see to it that 2013 is a safer year in this industry.
According to information from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, its inspectors passed out more than 1,000 notices and written warnings to construction companies performing work at height unsafely nationwide a year ago.
In an effort to protect workers, inspectors a year ago assessed more than 1,600 construction sites tied to the Preventing Falls from Height project, which seeks to lessen injuries and fatalities caused by falls in the construction sector. The project is continuing over the next 12 months, with construction workers being urged to make safety a priority in the New Year.
Sites Targeted That Put Workers at Risk
“The Ministry will continue to target sites that carry out work at height unsafely and those companies that put their workers at risk,” stated Francois Barton, the Ministry’s Southern Division general manager. We want to see enforcement figures improving in 2013 – safe work at height should be standard practice in the industry.
“Despite the high number of notices and warnings issued last year, it has been very positive to see some construction companies using innovative solutions to ensure their staff are safe while working at height. Companies are using adaptive scaffolding systems, mobile stair systems instead of ladders, and soft landing systems to stop workers getting hurt from falling off the top plate.”
Barton added that a sizable number of these solutions are also increasing productivity by bettering access for builders and the tradespeople that work alongside them.
Hundreds of Construction Workers Injured Every Year
Builders, roofers, electrical workers, painters and decorators are most apt to fall from height and get seriously hurt while they are working, according to officials.
“Tradespeople are going back to work after a few weeks off, so now is the time for a renewed focus on safety issues,” Barton remarked.
Hundreds of construction workers are injured on building sites every year – these accidents are preventable if precautions are in place. Workers must make safety a priority, especially during summer when there is an overall increase in workplace injury, according to Barton.
Author Michael B. Stack, CPA, Director of Operations, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. is an expert in employer communication systems and part of the Amaxx team helping companies reduce their workers compensation costs by 20% to 50%. He is a writer, speaker, and website publisher.  Contact:
©2013 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law.

Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker, attorney, or qualified professional about workers comp issues.

Workers Living in Tents Anti-Union Climate for Worker Deaths Blamed


According to a news release from the BWI, The Turkish Union of Road, Construction and Building Workers (YOL-IS) recently came out and blamed subcontracting and the anti-union climate in the Turkish construction industry as the main reason behind the deaths of at least 11 construction workers, when fire engulfed a giant tent used as a dormitory for workers at a construction site in Istanbul.
In the Union's statement to the press, they condemned the terrible conditions faced by thousands of building workers: "Who will say “STOP” to this murder of workers which is a result of employment under irregular, precarious, uncontrolled, and nonunion conditions? When landslides happen, workers die! When dam shutters blow, workers die! When fires break out, workers die!" [WCx]

The Union wants immediate preventive action and profound changes.

According to more information from the statement, “Hundreds of workers at construction sites in Esenyurt, Istanbul are staying in dormitory tents in freezing conditions. Heaters are used in these tents and fires are happening. The preventable deaths of workers on construction sites are portrayed as accidents, because the key facts are always swept under the carpet. Most construction work is subcontracted, and bosses prevent workers from being organized in trade unions. This means there is no Labour Inspection, health and safety measures fall on deaf ears and employment and workplace rules are not complied with.”
Turkish police detained five people on suspicion of having acted negligently in the incident. Speaking to reporters, Labor Minister Faruk Celik stated the fire was still being investigated, adding that the heaters used by the workers to keep warm might have caused the fire .[WCx]
The Union added that recommendations and guidelines on construction workers’ accommodation from the International Labour Organization and Development Institutions are ignored completely.

Author Robert Elliott, executive vice president, Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. He is an editor and contributor to Workers Compensation Management Program: Reduce Costs 20% to 50%. Contact:






Do not use this information without independent verification. All state laws vary. You should consult with your insurance broker or agent about workers comp issues.


©2012 Amaxx Risk Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved under International Copyright Law. If you would like permission to reprint this material, contact us at:

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