If you engage contractors that perform high risk construction work, then you need to collect and review their Safe Work Method Statements (SWMS), to avoid on-the-spot fines of $432 (for individual) and $2160 (for company).
Here’s what you should look for:
The front page of the SWMS contains:
- ABN and business name of the contractor
- Contact details for the Supervisor/s (name and contact phone number)
- The job details (principal contractor name and job address)
- Name of person who prepared the SWMS and the last revision date
- A list of the high risk work activities ( one or more of the 18 categories)
The contents of the SWMS contain:
- A description of each high risk work task
- The hazards relating to the high risk work task are specified
- Control measures to reduce risk are described
Somewhere in the SWMS there should be:
- A list of all the workers on the job (names)
- Confirmation that the workers have read and understood the SWMS (signature)
- A description of how the control measures will be implemented, monitored, and reviewed.
Working in accordance with SWMS
When you are on site, remember to check that work is carried out in accordance with the SWMS.
If not, then you must ask the workers to “stop work” until they can continue to work safely.
Your contractor may supply you with a generic SWMS where the risks between jobs are the same (i.e. no new hazards on a job).
Pyramid contractors and SWMS
In the case where your contractor engages a subcontractor, and they are all working on the job together, then one SWMS can cover all workers on the job, however all workers must review, understand, and agree to the contents of the SWMS.
If you need assistance with WHS Documents then contact SiteBook, and we will put you in touch with a local WHS consultant.
Legal stuff: This web site provides general information only. For advice and information specific to your business contact a WHS consultant.