The most important thing is everyone’s safe

Posted 12 Jul '15

L&F proud of achievement as five injury-free years put it well ahead of the field – but there’s never room for any complacency

While “LTI” statistics for the road transport industry – which includes a range of road users, not only passenger transport – make less than encouraging reading, for L&F Mine Transfers the numbers tell a much different and far more positive story.

In fact, they couldn’t be better! Since it first took to the roads almost five years ago, L&F Mine Transfers has not recorded one single lost-time injury.

This achievement in preventing any LTIs since its inception is all the more exceptional in the light of overall statistics for the industry in general.

In the Australian transport industry, the three letters “LTI” (“lost-time injuries”) hold special significance. For example, analysis from an Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) work-related injuries survey showed that workers in the “transport and storage” sector aged 35–44 years recorded an injury rate 75% higher than the rate recorded by all Australian workers in that age group.

Safe Work Australia (SWA) says a lost-time injury is “an occurrence that results in a fatality, permanent disability or time lost from work of one day/shift or more” (definition from the Australian Standard: Workplace Injury and Disease Recording Standard (Australian Standard 1885.1–1990), published by Standards Australia).

The injury-free performance is one from which L&F, its staff, clients and passengers can draw great reassurance.

It underlines how important health and safety are within the company’s operations and reinforces confidence in L&F’s safety and reliability as a transport provider. Public confidence in L&F may well be one of the reasons why, throughout its history, L&F has not lost a single service contract to any other provider.

L&F Mine Transfers’ CEO Lindsay Ward said: “We take enormous pride in what we do each day and consider the safe and reliable transport of people as a great responsibility and one we never take lightly.”

Mr Ward said he wanted L&F to be an “industry leader in all matters related to health and safety” and to set standards to which other operators in the industry could aspire.

And, he pointed out, it’s a job that’s never done. “The goal is to achieve continual improvement in our health and safety performance, with the ongoing aim of preventing injury or harm to any persons and our natural environment,” he said.

SWA has reported that over the five years from 2007–08 to 2011–12, the transport and storage industry accounted for 8% of all serious workers’ compensation claims. On average, there were 28 claims each day from employees who required one or more weeks off work because of work-related injury or disease.

This was higher than for all industries (12.7) and represented the highest incidence rate of serious claims of all industries in 2010–11.

And, of course, all these injuries and illnesses among workers have a cost – to the individual, of course, but also to the community and the country. SWA points out that the total economic cost of work-related injuries and illnesses among all Australian employers, workers and the community in 2008–09 was estimated to be $60.6 billion – or 4.8% of the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) for the same period.

As a result, the road transport industry was chosen as one of seven “national priority industries”, as part of an Australian strategy to help direct prevention activities to where they are needed the most.

Safety is a constant challenge and L&F Mine Transfers will continue to focus on being an industry leader.

For now, however, Mr Ward and the management and staff can be extremely proud that, over the past five years, they have successfully worked together to lead the way towards a safer future for all of us.

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