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Injured tradie passes lesson on to trainees

ON THE JOB: Clint Halliday is enforcing the message of Tradies National Health Month.
ON THE JOB: Clint Halliday is enforcing the message of Tradies National Health Month. Inga Williams

TRADIES are not heroes.

It's the message Tradies National Health Month will be drilling into workers this month to remind them about the importance of staying safe on the job.

The trades sector consistently has the highest rate for workplace injuries across any Australian workforce and Tradies National Health Month is all about changing that statistic.

Ipswich chippie Clinton Halliday knows all too well the dangers of workplace safety risks and the importance of using proper safety equipment, especially while working at heights.

The young dad's life and 16-year career changed when he fell from a roof less than a year ago and dislocated his knee and broke his leg.

"I fell off the roof after my supervisor told me to get up there and I slipped off because I had no harness and my leg snapped," he said.

Mr Halliday is still recovering from his injuries and he spent eight months unable to walk after extensive surgery.

He now works teaching apprentices and holds workplace health and safety at the forefront of his on-the-job training.

"Workplaces should have a toolbox meeting every morning before they start a job that details safety working at heights," he said.

"Everyone has got an opinion and they should say no if they feel unsafe and ask questions about safety.

"I wish I had said no on that day but you do anything when your job is on the line."

Maurice Blackburn Ipswich leader Stephanie Francis said it was essential for employees to be aware of their health and safety rights.

"Tradies health month is an initiative designed to raise awareness of the risks posed to workers in the trade sector. Australia's trade industry continues to have the highest health and safety issues of any sector so it's really important to keep the dialogue going about workplace health and safety and that's what this month aims to do," Ms Francis said.

Safety tips

Be your own advocate and know your rights. Employers are legally responsible for providing the employees with a safe work system.

If you're asked to do something you're not comfortable with speak to your supervisor. If no appropriate action is taken, escalate to a union delegate or workplace health and safety.

Make sure you use safe handling techniques.

Don't be a hero and ask for assistance if you need it.

Topics:  tradies



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