Australia has become a country with some strict safety regulations when it comes to construction. This applies to the operation of heavy machinery and vehicles and the restriction of who can do what. You may not realise that quite a few of the machines you see on construction sites require a high-risk work licence to operate, so here are a few of them that do and an explanation as to why.
That's right, something as innocuous as a crane requires a high-risk work licence, and there is a good reason behind it. While you might envision cranes as having many safety precautions inside the operating cabin, in reality almost everything is controlled by humans, and that means there is always a chance of error. This is true of practically every type of crane, and they all have their own restrictions and requirements, which means the type of high-risk work licence you apply for could be different depending on the crane you want to operate. Luckily most of the high-risk work licences that you can get that apply to cranes are similar across a national level, which means one obtained in Perth is often valid in Sydney too.
Forklifts might seem quite cumbersome and to carry a low risk of danger, but they often interact with and move hundreds of kilograms of dangerous material, which means they too require a high-risk work licence. Forklifts only have two categories for licences: LF and LO. It is important you pick the right one for your project before you start it, so always double-check which one you need. It may seem trivial, but forklifts have actually accounted for at least three workplace deaths every year since 2003 in Australia, which highlights how important it is that this training is continued and taken seriously.
Not everything that requires a high-risk work licence is, in fact, a vehicle or piece of machinery. Sometimes just regular construction tasks require a high-risk work licence, and that is the case with scaffolding work. There are three levels of scaffolding licences that you can apply for, and often people work their way up, one after another. The process of installing and removing scaffolding can take you quite high above the ground, and it is important that safety procedures are put in place in these conditions, especially when you consider you are working with rough metal bars with little support gear.