Outcomes from a second compliance campaign focused on mobile elevating work platforms have highlighted the need for training of ground support personnel in the event of an emergency.

Between 6 July 2020 and 30 October 2020, SafeWork SA undertook a second compliance campaign focused on Mobile Elevating Work Platforms (MEWPs) (compliance campaign).

The compliance campaign followed a recommendation arising from the SafeWork SA Elevating Work Platforms 2019 Audit Report. A MEWPs Guideline was developed and released by SafeWork SA prior to the compliance campaign to assist industry in the identification of hazards and risks associated with MEWPs and the essential role of ground support personnel.

SafeWork SA conducted 521 site visits and 256 compliance audits at various workplaces and EWP hire sites.

79 statutory notices were issued in response to non-compliance, consisting of 67 improvement notices and 12 prohibition notices. 36%  of notices referenced ground support personnel not being trained in an emergency, e.g. in the event of an emergency descent.

Around 50% of SWMS for high risk construction work did not identify the hazards and risks that could result in an emergency situation requiring ground support personnel being available and trained.

Read the full report for details and recommendations.

Use of a MEWP associated with construction is High Risk Construction Work (HRCW) and requires a Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) to be completed.

SWMS identify hazards and the controls to be implemented, and when followed correctly, minimise the risk of injury on worksites.

SafeWork SA will undertake a follow-up compliance audit campaign in late 2021 focussing on Safe Work Method Statements (SWMS) for high risk construction work.