The purpose of this project is to try and achieve an industry wide commitment to Essential Training Standards (ETS). It is proposed that, if adopted by industry, ETS will set base levels of training required by all those who work in operations when undertaking hazardous activities in an Australian commercial forest.
It will require ALL workers in the Australian Forest Industry to hold verifiable, nationally recognised, skill-based units of competency or that they are undergoing training when undertaking hazardous activities in an Australian commercial forest by January 1st 2020.
The proposed ETS includes two parts:
- two Basic General Requirements for ALL those operating in commercial forests and
- training specific to the Hazardous activity being undertaken.
AFCA has already identified that if ETS was adopted by industry there would need to be careful consideration on access and the ability to train employees and support would be needed achieve the required training. In addition, AFCA supports the FOLS Skills Verification Program and recognises that this tool could be used to support a ETS framework.
It is proposed that a set of Life Saving Rules be adopted nationally which are an enforced set of behavioural based rules related to hazards commonly faced in our industry. A number of forest management companies already have similar types of behavioural rules that if breached will put your life or others at risk.
The draft set of LSR (provided below) is currently being considered by a range of stakeholders within industry for feedback. It is anticipated these will potentially be reduced to 8 - 12 key behaviours. It is proposed that AFCA members will also be provided support to implement these into their business and will be given a framework that supports them into action.
The National Transport Commission released a draft revised Load Restraint Guide in June 2017 and sought comments on the draft.
The revised draft included new material specific to log restraint. Given the development of the Forestry Log Haulage Registered Code of Practice it was appropriate for AFCA to make a submission.
To view the NTC's Draft Revised Load Restraint Guide visit their website
Download AFCA's Submission here
There are many contributing factors that can create hazards and endanger the safety of those working in the forestry industry. In order to help inform, educate and increase awareness of safety regulations and strategies, Pro-Visual Publishing, in cooperation with the Australian Forestry Growers, and the Australian Forest Contractors Association, has released the latest edition of the Forestry Sector Guide to Workplace Safety.
This is an essential resource for forestry operations managers to ensure the health and safety of their workers across Australia. The guide covers a range of topics including, the process of assessing, identifying and controlling risks, manual tree felling hazards, coupe/harvesting access and preparation, and sunburn and heat stress.
The Augmented Reality (AR) components of the guide provide a space for interaction and a window for more information and resources relevant for the forestry industry. Simply scanning over any AR capable content using the free Pro-Vis AR app will allow users to instantly download relevant content to their smart device.
“I would like to thank all the sponsors of the Forestry Sector Guide to Workplace Safety 2017/18. Their support has made it possible for the Guide to be distributed free of charge.” – John Hutchings, CEO, Pro-Visual Publishing.
Pro-Visual Publishing is the leading specialist in wall-mounted workplace health & safety, food safety & hygiene, and wellbeing information resource guides. Each guide is practical and informative, providing a quick reference point for management and staff. Pro-Visual Publishing’s guides are vital resources to ensure workers return home exactly the way they came to work.
A new Work Health and Safety Audit Tool is now available nation-wide to support organisations demonstrate and report their compliance against various safety standards. The tool which was the brainchild of the Forest Owners and Service Suppliers (FOSS) committee, was developed in collaboration with ForestWorks. The FOSS committee consists of forest contracting businesses and forest managers in the Green Triangle.
It was developed to meet the challenge of foresting contracting businesses being audited by multiple forest managers, against slightly different standards. The Work Health and Safety Audit Tool was launched at an event in Mount Gambier in July, hosted by the Australian Forest Contractors Association (AFCA).
To read more
Access the Work Health and Safety Audit Tool visit WHS Audit Tool
AFCA has become an advocate of the FOLS Skills Verification Program, signing an agreement with ForestWorks to provide AFCA members and their operators with discounted FOLS fees. Currently, all relevant AFCA Directors are moving towards all their operators being uploaded on FOLS. HVP and Forestry Corporation NSW have both committed to FOLS and are currently transitioning their Forestry Contracting Businesses onto FOLS.
To see the member discounts and why AFCA belelives it is important click on AFCA FOLS FAQ
To find out more about FOLS Skills Verification Program visit ForestWorks website.
The Australian Forest Contractors Association is urging Leader of the Tasmanian Greens, Ms O’Connor to apologise following her comments made Thursday 16 March 2017 suggesting that ‘log trucks kill people’.
Adan Taylor, AFCA Chairman said “These comments are unfounded and demonstrate a lack of understanding of our industry, our hard-working people who live and work regionally, and support the vibrancy of many important rural communities. It defies logic to think anyone would start their work day with the intention of being involved in a fatality.”
Mr Taylor added “The Forest Industry has engaged and worked with a range of stakeholders, including WorkSafe Tasmania, to deliver improvements on log truck safety. These activities are making a difference and have led to enhanced safety knowledge for log truck drivers and has driven technology advancements.”
Our industry is also supported by policy frameworks like the Forest Safety Code (Tasmania) 2007 (currently under review) along with skills development and training which provides a framework to support continuous safety improvement. In addition, AFCA has also been working closely with the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator to proactively address Heavy Vehicle National Law requirements.
Most recently industry has endorsed a holistic national approach on log truck safety and industry is currently in the early stages of developing a national Log Haulage Registered Code of Practice. This will provide a whole of industry approach to driving log haulage best practice in safety.
Like all rural based industries, the forestry industry has challenges, like large distances to markets and must rely on heavy vehicle transport, and our industry does not hide behind the fact all road users can make improvements to safety. AFCA and our industry has and continues to strive to achieve this through a range of training and policy developments.
Mr Taylor concluded “We want our hard-working drivers to come home every night to their families and have productive and uneventful days; we want this for all road users and we are playing our part in this. To suggest that ‘log trucks kill people’ is misleading and upsetting and it also fails to acknowledge the amount of work that has, and continues to be undertaken by our whole industry on continuous safety improvements.”
Media Contact: Stacey Gardiner, General Manager 0419 328 093 I firstname.lastname@example.org
On Friday 14 October in Mt Gambier, South Australia, the Australian Forest Contractors Association (AFCA) held its annual general meeting (AGM) and dinner for 2016. More...
AUSTimber2016 events held in mid April led Senator Anne Ruston, Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources with a responsibility for Forestry to spend an entire day and evening at the event.
Minister Ruston spent the day in Traralgon visiting the AUSTimber HVP expo site and the evening at the event’s welcome dinner held in Morwell.
She took a walk through the two-kilometre long forest expo speaking with large and small sized business exhibitors alike. More...
On April 13, 2016 the Australian Forest Contractors Association (AFCA) officially acknowledged its most distinguished members at its Hall of Fame dinner in Traralgon, Victoria, which was held as part of AUSTimber.
Around 190 industry representatives attended the dinner many bringing family with them underlying the fact that many contractors are family businesses with quite a large number of second and third generation contractors. More...