Vehicles and powered mobile plant such as forklifts can be a serious safety issue if on-site traffic is not well managed. A Workplace Health and Safety Queensland audit campaign will target high risk work environments in early 2020, including sites where complex or unpredictable movements between trucks, mobile plant, cars, utes, forklifts and pedestrians often occur.
Inspectors will visit workplaces to talk to people with overall control of the site to look at how these risks are being managed. They’ll also question workers on whether safety measures are being effectively implemented.
Mobile plant operators will have their high-risk work licences inspected and there will be checks on whether mobile plant is properly maintained. Inspectors will want to see how workers are informed, what kind of communication the person in control has with others on-site and what information is provided to external organisations which have vehicles or staff visit the site.
Inspectors will also look at what is in place to eliminate or reduce the risk of pedestrians being hit, and whether the measures are effective. For example, does the site have or use:
- barriers physically separating pedestrian routes, such as separate entries and exits for vehicles
- dedicated areas for loading and unloading away from people
- physical isolation or separation by distance and/or guardrails or fences
- wide traffic routes so that vehicles or plant do not encroach on pedestrian areas
- barriers, fences or exclusion zones isolating workers or pedestrians from roads
- administrative controls, such as speed limits, driver directions (stop, give way, no entry, caution).