New courses, working safely around powerlines, free workshops, Safetree conference

Fiona’s blog: A new kind of training is needed in forestry

Training has always been important in forestry. But as the industry matures, the type of training that’s needed is expanding. We have a strong focus on ‘training for task’ and ensuring people achieve the right unit standards. Skills training will always be essential. But experience shows us that it’s not sufficient to keep people safe in dynamic workplaces like forestry sites, where no two days are the same.

We need additional training to develop other skills in our workforce. That includes skills like the ability to make good decisions, to function well in teams, and to adapt to new technology and work practices. Investing in building a workforce with a broader range of skills and competencies is essential for forestry to flourish.

That’s why Safetree has worked with the industry and The Learning Wave to develop three frontline leadership courses. These courses are for crews, foremen, and health and safety reps. They were piloted in 2018 with great success and now we are offering them across the sector. I’d encourage you to find out more about these courses, and how they could help you.

See the course prospectus

Feedback wanted: Guidance for contractors working around powerlines

Last year FICA, FISC, Transpower and other power companies met to talk about working safely around powerlines. Those conversations led to the creation of a guide for forestry contractors, along with a handy risk management plan. These resources have had input from FICA, Electricity Networks Association, Electricity Engineers’ Association, Transpower, Scanpower, Powerco and Unison. We’re keen for contractors to make use of them, and to let us know if you have any ideas on how to improve them. If you are working around powerlines make contact with the owner of the lines early to discuss safe working options.

See the resources

Regional workshops on certification and developing leadership

FISC and FICA are running a series of regional workshops for crew owners, managers and foremen. The sessions will provide information about contractor certification. There will also be information about our frontline leadership courses, and tips on improving tailgate meetings. Thanks to EWC for hosting the first one in Gisborne. The others are running in Nelson, Whangarei, Palmerston North, Balclutha, Rotorua and Masterton.

See more or register to attend

Safetree Conference – 13/14 March, Christchurch

We’re looking forward to our first Safetree Conference next week, being run with FICA. Our guest speaker is Sir John Kirwan. Other speakers include safety culture expert Dr Hillary Bennett, Connetics CEO Jono Brent and Daniel Hummerdal from WorkSafe NZ. If you haven’t registered for the conference but would like to attend email and we’ll see if we can squeeze you in.

Skid site management

Here are some tips from our tailgate meeting cards on setting up and running a safe skid site.

Know the safe zones and danger areas, which must be marked out

  • Remember these can change. If the skid becomes crowded safe zones can become unsafe.
  • If that happens, operations may need to stop until the log stocks become manageable.
  • To keep the skid area safer, make sure all vehicles park in parking areas – not where you need to work – and that log trucks use a dedicated turn-around area.

Make sure people and machines stay away from each other

  • All machine drivers must come onto the landing slowly.
  • If you’re working on the skid, remember the machine operator often has limited vision and might not see you. So wear hi-viz gear; work facing machines and don’t move behind them; and make sure the machine operator has seen you and signals you have been seen.
  • Machine operators must look around, use mirrors and reversing cameras to be sure everyone is clear before moving the machine.

Use communications systems

  • Everyone must clearly understand the communication systems used on site.
  • Remember to tell the machine operator you are changing where you are working, so they know where you are.
  • If anything on site changes – including safe or danger zones – communicate the changes to everyone straightaway.

See all the tailgate cards here

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