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WHSQ Incident updates: Serious falls from height at the Gold Coast

July 24 2017

There have been several recent falls from height at the Gold Coast which are being investigated by Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ).

In the 11 July 2017 incident in Ashmore, a worker fell through non-structural, non-weight bearing polycarbonate sheeting (alsynite) from a roof to the floor 4m below. Fortunately he was not seriously injured. Corrugated polycarbonate sheeting is not usually of structural grade nor suitable to walk upon and it can be further weakened by ultra-violet light.

Preventing a similar incident

This incident highlights that all roofs should be treated as fragile until a competent person has confirmed they are not. No sheeted roof should be relied on to bear a person’s weight.

No sheeted roof should be relied on to bear a person’s weight. This includes the roof ridge and purlins. Roofs are likely to be fragile if they are made with:

  • asbestos roofing sheets
  • polycarbonate or plastic commonly used in skylights
  • roof lights, particularly those in the roof plane that can be difficult to see in certain light conditions or when hidden by paint
  • fibre cement sheets
  • liner panels on built-up sheeted roofs
  • metal sheets and fasteners where corroded
  • glass, including wired glass
  • chipboard or similar material where rotted
  • wood slabs, slates and tiles.

Read the full article here: WHSQ Incident Update: Serious falls from height at the Gold Coast

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