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HSWA Compliance

HSWA CONTEXT

Earthquakes are recognised by WorkSafe NZ as a workplace hazard. The Health and Safety at Work Act places significant personal liability on company directors and board members who fail to eliminate or minimise workplace hazards.

LIFE SAFETY

Recent earthquakes demonstrated the effectiveness of professionally fitted restraints and highlighted deficiencies in many DIY restraint installations. As part of our quality assurance programme, we reviewed hundreds our seismic restraint installations.

None of the items that we restrained were undamaged.  This enabled our clients to rapidly restore business operations. Had the quakes occurred during business hours, they would have prevented serious injury or worse in many instances.  

HSWA LIABILITY ISSUES?

You may want to consider the following before entrusting seismic restraint installation to a handyman, builder or removal company:

  • Do they provide a detailed hazard assessment to help you make an informed decision?
  • Does their assessment include recommendations to eliminate or isolate hazards?
  • Does their proposed work meet NZ Standard - 4014 "Seismic restraint for building contents" ?
  • Do they understand the limitations of various types of restraints?
  • Is the hardware rated for seismic bracing?
  • What quality assurance protocols to they have in place?
  • Do they have a hazard management plan for hazards they introduce into your workplace?
  • Do they have public liability insurance to cover accidental damage to your property?
  • Are they members of any professional organisations?
  • Do they provide documentation to help you demonstrate due diligence for HSWA purposes?
  • Who owns the liability under HSWA if a substandard installation causes death or injury?

THE COST OF FAILURE

When the cost of failure could be measured in lives, is el-cheapo really the way to go?