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Work Health and Safety Blog

There's so much happening in the world of health & safety. Changes in legislation and requirements, changes in best practice, changes in ... you name it. Here's my take on making it simple. Simply Genius WHS - stop guessing... manage with confidence.

What you need in safe work method statements

Maralyn Kastel - Friday, October 04, 2013

Given how common safe work method statements are today, many people may not fully appreciate their importance in creating and maintaining a safe work environment.  A well written work method statement details the hazards and risks associated with a particular job. They also provide information about the safety equipment needed to eliminate or minimise the risks.

A properly constructed work method statement will break down a particular job into its logical parts and then go through the process of that job in a step by step fashion.

This will identify the hazards associated with each step along with the proper risk control measures needed to control that hazard.  To be effective safe work methods should be written in plain English that is easily understood by the workers who will use them. 

Whilst the Work Health & Safety legislation mandates safe work method statements for high risk construction work, the use of them is becoming standard practice in many other industries. Companies increasingly need to demonstrate compliance with WHS legislation in tenders and evidence of training of workers. In addition to breaking down the job into its parts and identifying the hazards associated with each step the following information is normally included:

  • The name of “the person conducting a business or undertaking” address, ABN and location of the work to be performed
  • Details of the person who is “responsible for ensuring implementation, monitoring compliance” with the work method statement.
  • A description of how the task is to be done and a risk assessment of the steps
  • The personnel protective equipment to be used
  • Training and qualifications required to perform the job task
  • The controls that will be in place to eliminate or, if that’s not possible, minimise the risks associated with the task.  

The goal of these safe work method statements is to allow supervisors and workers to understand not only how to accomplish that job but how to do so safely.  Contact us to learn more about work method statements and how to effectively use them to improve your workplace safety. 

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