Employers OSH responsibilities
In New Zealand, we adhere to a Code of Practice. The Forklift Manufacturers’ Association, the Department of Labour and the Ministry of Transport agrees to this Code . Also, it is based on existing American and Australian safety standards. And have a legislation in the Health & Safety in Employment Act, 1992 (H&SA). This is the document that OSH uses when investigating accidents involving forklifts.
It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the safety of forklifts, and minimizing the hazards.
Recently, a Gisborne wood products company had to pay a fine of $40,000 (plus legal expenses) because a forklift operator died. The Department of Labour report said a contributing factor in the decision was the poor maintenance of forklift. Therefore, it was vital that forklifts are in good working order. The employer neglected their duties with respect to forklift safety.
One of the best ways to address this responsibility is by implementing a planned maintenance/service program. Your service agent will bring your attention to the possible faults, non-compliance issues, or potential hazards. Thus, the service agent has fulfilled their obligation under the H&SA. At this point, the customer assumes the responsibility that exists where an identified issue results in an accident or harm.
HEALTH AND SAFETY IN EMPLOYMENT ACT, 1992
- Employers’ duties – ensure that machinery and equipment are safe for employees
- Hazard management – employers shall have an effective method to identify hazards in the place of work (pre-existing, new and potential)
These details relating to forklift compliance issues are intended to assist the employer to understand their responsibilities under the H&SA. For further information contact Centra Forklifts, and discuss a plan about how you can best ensure that you are meeting your requirements, and protecting the interests of yourself, your business, and your staff.