26 September 2023

SafeWork inspectors ski to the snowfields

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With early snow falling across the alpine regions, SafeWork NSW inspectors have arrived on the slopes to ensure workers and visitors alike can enjoy the ski season safely.

Encouraging workers and skiers to start the season with a “safety-first” attitude, the Minister for Work Health and Safety, Sophie Cotsis said SafeWork launched its alpine ski area safety compliance program with an industry roundtable involving all snowfield operators to discuss the safe operation of passenger ropeways, including chairlifts and gondolas.

Ms Cotsis said that following the roundtable, SafeWork NSW engineers began visits to Thredbo Kosciuszko, Perisher Blue, Charlotte Pass, and the reopening Selwyn snowfields to inspect passenger ropeways and ensure there were appropriate protections around moving plant as well as induction and safety systems in place.

“The early snow was a nice surprise that will have workers, skiers and snowboarders excited for the season ahead,” Ms Cotsis said.

“Our hardworking inspectors wasted no time arriving on the snowfields this week to meet with operators, inspect chairlifts and gondolas and ensure workers are appropriately trained,” she said.

“The beginning of the snow season is the busiest time of the year as thousands of workers move into these areas.

“We want business and workers to start the season with a safety-first attitude.”

Ms Cotsis said it was a regulatory priority of SafeWork in 2023 to better protect seasonal workers in NSW by improving industry compliance with work health and safety obligations.

She said SafeWork would be onsite and continuing to maintain this safety priority with inspectors scheduled to visit Perisher, Selwyn, Charlotte Pass and Thredbo throughout the rest of the snow season.

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