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Training partnership aims to increase forestry safety

A PARTNERSHIP agreement between Forestry Tasmania and the Tasmanian Forest Contractors Association (TFCA) promises to deliver improved safety outcomes for forest workers.
The partnership provides for on-the-job training of forest contractors in safety management, allowing them to gain nationally-recognised qualifications.
The agreement recognises the need to create safe workplaces for all forest workers.
Last year, Forestry Tasmania adopted a new set of corporate values, the first of which was: ‘We care for people and their environment.’
The signing of the new training partnership is seen as a positive step towards reducing the safety gap between Forestry Tasmania employees and contractors.
The partnership will target forest contractor safety issues and provide for:
• a part time TFCA project manager, who will be responsible for delivering on-the-job training for forest contractors;
• safety training for forest contractors in hazard identification and risk assessment, especially in new harvesting methods such as aggregated retention;
• a higher level of participation in training by forest contractors, and access to nationally recognised qualifications in safety management;
• implementation of a safety management system, which will include audits; and
• access to mentors and a helpline for workplace issues for forest contractors.

The training program will be funded through the Tasmanian Community Forest Agreement (TCFA).
“Through this program, these funds are helping to protect our most important asset – our forest workers – by delivering improved safety outcomes,” said Bob Gordon, Forestry Tasmania managing director.