Fall down ventilation duct (23 Mar 2020)
Date of incident: 23 March 2020
A 24 year old worker suffered broken hips, a dislocated shoulder and a broken jaw when he fell more than 20 metres down a ventilation duct. Falls from heights is the number one killer on NSW construction sites.
The duct opening (left) and the exit point (right)
- SafeWork NSW inspectors responded to the incident.
- SafeWork NSW commenced an investigation to determine the cause and circumstances of the incident.
Businesses are reminded of their duty to identify hazards and manage risks to work health and safety in accordance with the provisions of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 and Work Health and Safety Regulation 2017.
You must consider ‘reasonably practicable’ control measures to manage the risk of falls from heights.
Make sure you:
- establish and highlight ‘no go’ zones around openings and penetrations during construction work
- immediately make safe any opening or penetration after it is formed using edge protection and or covers that are strong enough to withstand the load of a worker and materials, fix them in place, and mark them so they’re not mistaken for construction material.