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Workplace Safety: Transport, Postal and Warehousing

The ninth largest industry in Australia in terms of workers, the transport, postal and warehousing industry is a diverse one. If a job involves the transport of either passengers or goods by road, rail, water or air, it’s part of the industry. Truck drivers, delivery drivers, storepersons and mail sorters are all counted as employees of the industry, among countless other types of workers. If you’re an employer in the Transport, Postal and Warehousing industry, it’s important to be aware of the relevant safety issues and regulations.

In additional to normal occupational health and safety regulations, the transport, postal and warehousing industry has a number of state-specific ones like traffic management, fatigue management, forklift operations and working with hazardous substances that you should be aware of.

If you’ve been injured while working in the industry, Shine Lawyers can help you to make a claim for compensation.

Safety risks and how to address them

Workplace safety considerations in the transport, postal and warehousing industry include:

Manual handling: This area encompasses injuries caused by activities such as lifting or carrying. Good posture and understanding of lifting techniques can help reduce the risk but effective workplace design and the employment of mechanical aids such as forklifts can be even more effective.

Traffic accidents: This is a significant risk factor in any job that involves driving. Employers are the vital key to creating a workplace culture of safe driving, consulting on the topic with health and safety representatives, developing the right procedures, selecting and maintaining safe vehicles and ensuring that workers are suitable to drive.

Falls from heights: If work needs to be completed at heights, the most effective method of reducing the risk of falls is to install a fall prevention method like scaffolding or guard rails.

Falling objects: Safety + Health Magazine has a useful article about preventing the damage caused by falling objects.

Hazardous chemicals: Safe Work Australia has detailed information regarding the risks involved in the handling of chemicals and how to reduce them:

Shift work fatigue: There is no silver bullet when it comes to preventing accidents caused by fatigue. Employers can reduce the risk, however, with measures such as limiting the number of night shifts employees have to take per week and allowing sufficient recovery time between shifts.

Stats and figures

The Transport, Postal and Warehousing Industry encompasses many different kinds of jobs and some of them have higher levels of injury than others.

One example is stevedoring, the loading and unloading of vessel cargo. According to Safe Work Australia, stevedoring has a rate of serious injury three times higher than the average rather for all industries and over twice the rate of construction. In an average year at least one stevedoring worker is killed on the job.

Road transport is another industry with a high fatality rate. Safe Work Australia claims that between 2003-15 there were 583 work-related fatalities in the road transport industry.

Shine Lawyers – contact us

Being injured at work can be traumatic and at times permanently life-changing. Let Shine Lawyers fight for your rights and help you acquire the compensation you need for your recovery. Our worker’s compensation lawyers work on a no win, no fee basis.

Written by Shine Lawyers. Last modified: April 1, 2019.

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