We have a solid track record of redesigning our work to ensure it is completed in the safest way possible. However, even with careful work practices, there have been several injuries to the hands and fingers of our employees whilst installing and uninstalling spring packs – a common suspension tool in vehicles used on site.
In September 2017, two of our Fitters from our transport division were attempting to remove and replace a leaf spring pack on a multi-combination road train. While trying to lift and manoeuvre the spring pack into position on the axle assembly, one of the employees changed their posture which caused the heavy 52kg spring pack to slip from his grip, resulting in hand fractures. In reviewing the incident, it highlighted that a change in process was needed to avoid a similar injury in the future.
The search for a solution began with a brainstorming workshop with our transport division employees. They were asked to identify a concept which would significantly reduce the potential risk of injuries when installing and uninstalling leaf spring packs to multi combination trailers. This was followed by a feasibility workshop which led to a final concept design for the new Spring Leaf Hoist.
The final solution resulted in a fully manoeuvrable and fit-for-purpose hoist that meets engineering standards and removes the requirement for our people to physically manoeuvre leaf spring packs into position on trailer axles. The new Spring Leaf Hoist will reduce the risk of soft tissue injuries and hand injuries to employees while installing and uninstalling spring packs, and will be utilised in the Carina and Koolyanobbing workshops.
Our Award Nomination:
Our Spring Leaf Hoist design earned us a place as a finalist in the WA 2018 Safety and Health Resources Sector Awards. These Awards recognise individuals, teams and companies that have developed a new initiative or an original solution to specific safety and health problems in the workplace.