Unstable or partially collapsed structures, fallen or damaged trees, fallen powerlines and floodwaters are among the common health and safety risks following the destructive weather across the state.
Many property owners and volunteers will also be using potentially hazardous equipment that they may be unfamiliar with or use infrequently, such as power tools and ladders.
WorkSafe Executive Director of Health and Safety Julie Nielsen said it was critical to fully consider how each task could be done safely before getting started.
"It is not just those who are working on the clean-up who could be at risk but also friends and family, emergency service workers, vehicles, neighbouring properties and public infrastructure," Ms Nielsen said.
"People will understandably want to get things back to normal as quickly as possible, but rushing and taking short-cuts could potentially only make the situation even worse."
Things to consider during storm clean-up and recovery include:
- Before starting any task, take time to identify potential hazards and consider how to remove or mitigate the associated risks.
- Ensure work is properly planned and coordinated with regular communication, sufficient supervision and regular rest breaks.
- Only use equipment that is in good condition, fit for purpose and has appropriate guards in place.
- Have appropriate personal protective equipment for each task (for example boots, gloves, eye and ear protection, hats, sun protective clothing and high visibility vests) and ensure it is worn correctly.
- Ensure machinery and vehicle operators are competent and experienced in using specific equipment for the intended task.
- Clear debris from areas where vehicles are operating, implement traffic management plans and be aware of potential washouts hidden by standing water.
- Use powered machinery for lifting large or heavy items, particularly if they are waterlogged.
- Identify any likely asbestos containing materials or dangerous chemicals.
- Ensure children are well supervised and away from areas where work is going on.
WorkSafe to review young worker paymentsNews
11 Sep 2020
Maximum penalties imposed after fatal truck crashNews
08 Oct 2020
Fifty years since West Gate Bridge tragedyNews
14 Oct 2020
Aggravated charges for alleged chemical stockpilesNews
26 Aug 2020
Secure worksites for wild windsNews
07 Sep 2020
Worker dies at Geelong factoryNews
26 Oct 2020
Worker dies after falling under reversing truckNews
02 Nov 2020
Aged care provider fined for induction failuresNews
30 Oct 2020
Farm worker electrocutedNews
13 Nov 2020
More fines after Mt Waverley collapseNews
18 Nov 2020
Quarry fined after excavator hits powerlinesNews
15 Sep 2020
Road worker dies after being hit by vehicleNews
21 Oct 2020
Put safety first during reopeningNews
27 Oct 2020
Worker dies after fallNews
06 Oct 2020
Take a break to fight farm fatigueNews
24 Jul 2020
Hire company fined after worker’s deathNews
27 Jul 2020
Workplace incidents claim two livesNews
27 Jul 2020
Employers must notify WorkSafe of COVID-19 casesNews
28 Jul 2020
Safer health care workplaces a priorityNews
29 Jul 2020
Health and Safety Month helping to navigate COVID-19News
22 Sep 2020