Occupational health & safety

Your responsibilities

As an 11 Recruitment temp, you will be exposed to a variety of workplaces throughout the course of your employment with us. Regardless of where you are working, you will be obligated to protect your health and safety, and to avoid adversely affecting the health and safety of others in the workplace.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act and Regulations, as an employee you have a responsibility to:

  • Adhere to all OH&S policies and instructions of 11 Recruitment and your host employer.
  • Obey all lawful and reasonable orders regarding the use of safety equipment and protective clothing.
  • Inform 11 Recruitment before moving to a different area, machine, or workstation if that change was not part of the original job description.
  • Report all injuries, near misses, mishaps, illnesses, dangers, and hazards to 11 Recruitment.
  • Take action to minimise workplace hazards (where possible).
  • Contact 11 Recruitment immediately if injury or illness occurs during/due to a temp assignment.
  • Take the meal breaks that you are entitled to.

Please take the time to read through the following information. If you have any questions or concerns, contact your 11 Recruitment consultant.

Your responsibilities

Office safety

Many accidents and injuries that occur in an office are avoidable if the proper care is taken. Make sure you check the following:

  • Trafficways and aisles should be well lit and kept clear of materials, equipment, rubbish, and cords.
  • Floors should be level and the use of mats discouraged. All spills should be cleaned up immediately.
  • Filing cabinets should not be placed so they open into walkways. Never leave drawers open or open more than one drawer at a time.
  • Use handrails provided when using stairs.
  • Never carry pencils or pens in your pocket with the point exposed.
  • Never attempt to clean, adjust, or repair office machines during operation.
  • Do not obstruct exits or fire doors, ensure that they are always clear.
  • Watch where you are walking. Don’t take shortcuts. Use designated passageways. Don’t step on or over equipment, conveyors, etc.

Commonly used items should be stored:

  • According to bulk and weight.
  • In readily accessible areas.
  • Between knee and shoulder height.

Ergonomics

Having a comfortable work space with proper office ergonomics is important to prevent neck and back pain, as well as sore wrists and fingers. Make sure you check the following:

  • The chair is the correct height for you. It should be adjusted so that your thighs are horizontal or angled slightly downwards. There should be a clearance of about 6cm between your thighs and the desk.
  • Ensure that your feet can rest on the floor (if not, use a footrest).
  • The backrest can be adjusted.
  • The keyboard allows your forearms to be close to horizontal and your wrists to be straight.
  • The screen is about an arm’s length away and the centre of the screen is about shoulder height.
  • Glare can be minimised by tilting the screen down.
  • If you are working on computers for prolonged periods, make sure you take a break every hour. Get up and walk around for a minute.

Noise & acoustic shock

Too much noise at work can lead to temporary or permanent hearing loss or tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Hearing damage can occur from extended exposure to noise or exposure to very loud impact or explosive sounds.

Acoustic shock, for example, may occur following an abrupt, intense, and unanticipated acoustic stimulus, usually delivered by a telephone handset or headset. Symptoms start shortly after the triggering acoustic incident and can be short-lived or can last for a considerable time. If persistent, the condition can lead to significant disability.

The potential for noise to be hazardous is not always obvious. The effects of long-term exposure are cumulative, and a worker may carry out several noisy work activities that over time expose them to hazardous noise.

A quick test you can do to assess the noise in your workplace is the ‘one-metre rule’. If you need to raise your voice to talk to someone about one metre away, you can assume the sound level is likely to be hazardous to hearing.

You could also inspect the workplace by regularly walking around, talking to workers, and observing how things are done. Find out where noise is coming from, and which tasks or processes produce it. Take immediate action to control noise where possible, for example, fix loose panels that are vibrating and rattling during machine operation.

You should also review available information regarding noise levels from manufacturers or suppliers of equipment used at the workplace. Information and advice about hazards and risks relevant to particular industries and work activities are available from regulators, industry associations, unions, technical specialists and health and safety consultants.

If you think you may have suffered an acoustic shock incident, report it to your supervisor and your 11 Recruitment consultant immediately.

Safe Work Australia - Noise


Electricity

Electricity is one of the most important power sources that we use every day. But if it's not properly managed it can cause serious injury and death.

The risk of death or injury from electricity is strongly linked to where and how it is used. For example, the risks are generally higher if it is used:

  • Outdoors or in damp surroundings - equipment may become wet and be at greater risk of damage.
  • In cramped spaces with earthed metalwork. For example, inside a tank or bin, it may be difficult to avoid receiving an electrical shock if an electrical fault develops.

Some types of equipment can also involve greater risk than others, for example:

  • Portable electrical equipment including plugs and sockets, electrical connections to the cable itself are especially vulnerable to damage.
  • Extension leads, particularly those connected to equipment that is frequently moved, can suffer similar problems.

All repairs to equipment must be completed by a qualified electrician. Do not attempt to repair equipment yourself and do not use cables that are damaged or frayed.

Notify your supervisor if any electrical incidents occur.

Safe Work Australia - Electrical safety


Safety signs

Prohibition Sign

Prohibition signs indicate that an action or activity is not permitted. Its designated symbolic shape is a red circle with a diagonal red slash through it. This is usually superimposed over a black pictograph, such as a cigarette, to indicate what specific activity is referred to. The background is white, and any text is black.

Mandatory Sign

Mandatory signs indicate that an instruction must be carried out. Its symbolic shape is a blue circle. A white pictograph, for example, safety goggles, is superimposed on this to indicate the activity which is to be mandatory. The background is white, and any text is black.

Restriction Sign

Restriction signs place a numerical or other defined limit on an activity or use of a facility. Its symbolic shape is a red circle, but without the diagonal slash as in prohibition signs. This also would have a black pictograph or another legend inside the circle, a white background, and any text in black. 

Danger Sign

Danger signs warn of a particular hazard or hazardous condition that is likely to be life-threatening. Its symbolic shape is the word DANGER in white on a red oval, which is surrounded by a black rectangle. This usually forms a heading for a white background on the sign. Alternatively, it may occupy the left side of a horizontal sign. Any text is in black.

Warning Sign

Warning signs warn of a hazard or hazardous condition that is not likely to be life-threatening. Its symbolic shape is a black triangle. A black pictograph usually appears inside the triangle to indicate the specific hazard. The sign background is yellow with any text in black. 

Emergency Information Sign

Emergency information signs indicate the location of, or directions to, emergency related facilities such as exits, safety equipment or first aid facilities. The background is green, and any text or pictograph is white.

Fire Sign

Fire signs advise the location of fire alarms and fire-fighting facilities. The background is red, and any text or pictograph is white.


Travelling to & from work

Make sure you allow enough time to get to your temp assignment and don’t rush.

If you are running late for an assignment, contact your 11 Recruitment consultant and they will advise the client.

Use a hands-free kit if you need to talk on your mobile while driving, and make sure you follow all relevant road rules.

The Government of WA - Road rules and traffic regulations

Travelling to & from work

Manual handling

Whether it’s stacking shelves, working on a conveyor line, or entering data into a computer, most jobs involve carrying out some type of manual task. If poorly designed or done incorrectly, these manual tasks can become hazardous.

A hazardous manual task is where you must lift, lower, push, pull, carry, hold or restrain something. It can include:

  • Repetitive movement.
  • Repetitive or sustained force.
  • High or sudden force.
  • Sustained or awkward postures.
  • Exposure to vibration.

Lifting and manual handling injuries are preventable. Follow these guidelines to avoid injury.

  • Test every load before you lift by pushing the object lightly with your hands or feet to see how easily it moves. This tells you about how heavy it is.
  • Remember, a small size does not always mean a light load.
  • Make sure the weight is balanced and packed, so it won't move around
  • Loose pieces inside a box can cause accidents if the box becomes unbalanced.
  • Be sure you have a tight grip on the object before you lift it.
  • Handles applied to the object may help you lift it safely.
  • Use slow and smooth movements. Hurried, jerky movements can strain the muscles in your back.
  • Keep your body facing the object while you lift it. Twisting while lifting can hurt your back.
  • Make sure you have enough room to lift safely. Clear a space around the object before lifting it.
  • Look around before you lift and look around as you carry. Make sure you can see where you are walking. Know where you are going to put down the load.
  • Avoid walking on slippery, uneven surfaces while carrying something.
  • Get help before you try to lift a heavy load. Use a dolly or a forklift if you can.

Proper lifting techniques

Start in a safe position

Before you lift a heavy object, think through your task. Decide where you're going to place the object and how you'll get there. When lifting an object from the floor, stand close to the object. Don't lift from a standing position with your waist bent or knees locked. One option is to kneel, resting one knee on the floor.

Maintain your natural curve

With one knee resting on the floor, tighten your core muscles and lift the object between your legs. Maintain the natural curve in your lower back, and don't hold your breath. Be careful to hold the object close to your body. Rest the object on your knee as you prepare to stand.

Use your legs

As you stand, maintain the natural curve in your lower back and keep your core muscles tight. Use your core muscles (not your back) to lift the object. Don't twist when lifting. Step to the side if you need to turn.

Squat instead of kneeling

As another option, squat rather than kneel on one knee to lift an object from the floor. Stand as close to the object as possible, positioning it between your knees as you quat. Keep your feet parallel, or stagger one foot ahead of the other.

Let your legs do the work

As you stand, be careful to hold the object close to your body. Maintain the natural curve in your lower back and keep your core muscles tight. Use your leg muscles (not your back) to lift the object.

Avoid twisting

When you're standing ready to move, continue holding the object close to your body to decrease the strain on your lower back. Keep your core muscles tight. Turn by pivoting your feet, not your back.


Bullying

Workplace bullying is repeated, and unreasonable behaviour directed towards a worker or group of workers that creates a risk to health and safety.

It is a risk to health and safety because it may affect the mental and physical health of workers. Taking steps to prevent it from occurring and responding quickly if it does is the best way to deal with workplace bullying.

Bullying can take different forms including psychological, physical, or even indirect - for example deliberately excluding someone from work-related activities. It can be obvious, and it can be subtle, which means it’s not always easy to spot.

Unreasonable behaviour includes victimising, humiliating, intimidating, or threatening. Whether a behaviour is unreasonable can depend on whether a reasonable person might see the behaviour as unreasonable in the circumstances.

Some examples of workplace bullying include:

  • Abusive or offensive language or comments.
  • Aggressive and intimidating behaviour.
  • Belittling or humiliating comments.
  • Practical jokes or initiation.
  • Unjustified criticism or complaints.

Sexual harassment

Sexual harassment is defined as any unwelcome sexual advance, unwelcome request for sexual favours or other unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature in circumstances where a reasonable person, having regard to all the circumstances, would anticipate the possibility that the person harassed would be offended, humiliated, or intimidated.

Sexual harassment can include:

  • Unwelcome touching, hugging, cornering, or kissing.
  • Inappropriate staring or leering.
  • Suggestive comments or jokes.
  • Using suggestive or sexualised nicknames for co-workers.
  • Sexually explicit pictures, posters, or gifts.
  • Circulating sexually explicit material.
  • Persistent unwanted invitations to go out on dates.
  • Requests or pressure for sex.
  • Intrusive questions or comments about a person's private life or body.
  • Unnecessary familiarity, such as deliberately brushing up against a person
  • Insults or taunts based on sex.
  • Sexual gestures or indecent exposure.
  • Following, watching, or loitering nearby another person.
  • sexually explicit or indecent physical contact.
  • Sexually explicit or indecent emails, phone calls, text messages or online interactions.
  • Repeated or inappropriate advances online.
  • Threatening to share intimate images or film without consent.
  • Actual or attempted rape or sexual assault.

Some forms of sexual harassment are also criminal offences and should be reported to the police.

Sexual harassment is not always obvious, repeated, or continuous. Unlike bullying, which is characterised by repeated behaviour, sexual harassment can be a one-off incident.

Sexual harassment can also be a behaviour that while not directed at a particular person, affects someone who is exposed to it or witnesses it (such as overhearing a conversation or seeing sexually explicit posters in the workplace).

Any employee who feels that he or she has been harassed in violation of this policy should contact their supervisor and their 11 Recruitment consultant.

Safe Work Australia - Sexual harassment

Sexual harassment

Drugs & alcohol

Alcohol and drugs (including medicine prescribed by a doctor or available from a pharmacy) can affect a person’s ability to work safely.

All workers have are obligated to take reasonable care of their health and safety and ensure they don’t adversely affect that of others. This means they must be fit and well enough to do their job, not be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or use alcohol or illegal drugs while at work.

It is your responsibility to be fit for work and to meet performance standards. You must not:

  • Be adversely affected by alcohol or drugs during working hours
  • Use illicit drugs on the premises of a host employer. Any employee found in possession of illicit drugs will be dismissed. 

In some jobs such as road and rail transport, maritime and mining occupations, the law sets down a legal blood alcohol level and may prohibit a worker from being affected by any drugs - legal or illegal.

Some companies have explicit policies to test their workers for alcohol and illicit substances. This is particularly important if a worker could kill or seriously injure themselves, another worker, or a member of the public.

If you have any concerns or suspect another employee of drug or alcohol use in the workplace you must advise your host employer supervisor and 11 Recruitment Consultant.

Safe Work Australia - Drugs and alcohol

Drugs & alcohol

What to do in an emergency

In the event of an emergency stay calm and follow all instructions and procedures issued by your host employer.

Employers must ensure an emergency plan is prepared for the workplace. This is a written set of instructions that outlines what workers and others at the workplace should do in an emergency. It must provide for the following:

  • Emergency procedures, including an effective response to an emergency.
  • Evacuation procedures.
  • Notifying emergency service organisations at the earliest opportunity.
  • Medical treatment and assistance.
  • Effective communication between the person authorised to coordinate the emergency response and all people at the workplace.
  • Testing of the emergency procedures - including the frequency of testing.
  • Information, training, and instruction to relevant workers in relation to implementing the emergency procedures.

Emergency procedures such as fire evacuation should be discussed with you during your induction at the client site on your first day. If this does not occur, please contact your 11 Recruitment consultant immediately.

Safe Work Australia - Emergency plans and procedures


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