Free electrical training for a safer workplace
Published Tuesday, 07 September, 2021 at 11:05 AM
Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development
The Honourable Di Farmer
This Electrical Safety Week rural workplaces are being urged to take advantage of free electrical safety and awareness training from TAFE Queensland.
Minister for Training and Skills Development Di Farmer said TAFE Queensland had worked closely with leading agricultural industry groups, the Queensland Farmers’ Federation (QFF) and CANEGROWERS, to design the Rural Electrical Safety Awareness micro-credential.
“The Palaszczuk Government has put investing in skills at the heart of our $14.2 billion COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan, and this is just another example of how we’re delivering on that,” Minister Farmer said.
“This free Rural Electrical Safety Awareness micro-credential is an online introductory course providing foundation skills in how to work safely with electrical equipment in rural workplaces.
“Our Agriculture industry is growing, and it’s important to make sure people are aware of important electrical safety issues.
“In March 2021, the National Skills Commission predicted that employment in Australia’s Agriculture industry will increase by 2.2 per cent in the next four years to November 2025 – from 309,000 to 315,800 workers.
“This free training product can help with the induction of the predicted 6,800 new workers, as well as refreshing the skills and knowledge of existing workers in the sector across Queensland.”
Queensland Farmers’ Federation Chief Executive Officer Dr Georgina Davis said the training would provide valuable workplace health and safety skills for those working around electrical hazards on farms.
“Agriculture is one of the most dangerous sectors to work in due to the combination of hazards. This training aims to raise awareness of electrical safety issues and ensure that farmers, workers and other people on farms are not exposed to health and safety risks,” Dr Davis said.
“Upholding electrical safety and awareness on Queensland farms is a serious issue and must be a priority. QFF encourages workers across Queensland’s agriculture sector to take advantage of the opportunity and complete this training fee free.”
CANEGROWERS Chief Executive Officer Dan Galligan said every year there are incidents on and near sugarcane farms involving machinery and power lines.
“This harvest season there have been six incidents already, compared to 10 for the whole season last year,” Mr Galligan said.
“This short, free training course is designed to improve awareness of the dangers and risks. It is very important for employees new to the sugarcane industry this season and for many growers and contractors, with years of experience, it will be an hour well spent to reinforce their knowledge of the safety issues around power lines.
“The aim is to keep people safe and the harvest on track.”
TAFE Queensland Chief Executive Officer Mary Campbell said TAFE Queensland is committed to providing training to support employers with skills to keep people safe at work.
“TAFE Queensland is a ‘safety-first’ organisation and in the same way we work to ensure our staff are safe at work, we want to ensure that people working in rural workplaces have the awareness and skills they need to also stay safe at work so they too can return home safe to their families,” Mrs Campbell said.
Ergon Energy Community Safety Specialist Glen Cook said the training also features the successful free lookupandlive.com powerline safety app that enables businesses across a range of industries to adequately plan work near powerlines to adhere to their Workplace Health and Electrical Safety obligations, raising the awareness of electrical safety in their workplace, and appropriately train their workers in electrical safety.
“Electrical Safety laws are in place for a very important reason - electricity can be fatal if not identified and suitably controlled on worksites,” Mr Cook said.
“Knowledge is the best defence against electrical hazards in the workplace and this training will be important for people who work with electricity to understand how electricity works and how to manage risk in the workplace.
“All industries that have powerlines on their properties can benefit from this training as it raises overall electrical awareness and is fee free.”
To enrol in TAFE Queensland’s Rural Electrical Safety Awareness Micro-credential visit tafeqld.edu.au today and see where TAFE can take you.
Find out more about Electrical Safety Week here: https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/resources/campaigns/electricity-safety-week
Media contact: Kate Talbot, 0439 803 211