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Site supervision

Site safety. Where do you fit into the picture - coverToo many injuries happen when no one takes responsibility for effectively supervising safety on site.

It doesn't matter what your job is – everyone has a role in safety. When a WorkSafe Inspector visits your site, they will expect you to know yours.

Principal contractor

You have the primary responsibility for safety on site. It's a duty that can't be contracted out. Your job is to make sure all supervisors are doing their job.

  • If you appoint a site supervisor, ensure they know construction safety.
  • Ensure the site has a safety plan and that it is being followed.
  • Encourage supervisors and contractors to report safety issues, and fix them promptly.
  • Keep safety communication channels open.

Site supervisor

Principal contractors can supervise a site themselves or delegate safety responsibilities to a supervisor. Your job is to keep the site safe, even when you are not there.


You are responsible for the safety of your employees and contractors. You might appoint a leading hand or foreman to manage your crew's safety on site.

Tradespeople, labourers and apprentices

WorkSafe has developed a poster featuring this information - print it out and put up on your worksite or keep it somewhere handy. To order copies from our advisory service click here.

Find out more about site supervision and OHS by enrolling in these training courses:

  • A variety of courses for site supervisors are offered by the Master Builders Association of Victoria (MBAV) and the Housing Industry Association (HIA). These courses are tailored for specific construction sectors and vary in detail and length.
  • Health and Safety Representative training provides an introduction to health and safety issues and can be the starting point for supervisor training. WorkSafe has approved several organisations throughout Victoria, including unions, industry associations and insurers, to tailor and deliver this course to the construction industry.

If you supervise apprentice electricians, take a look at EnergySafe Victoria's Supervision guidelines for apprentices working on electrical installations, on EnegrySafe Victoria's website.