Victorian employers are being warned to properly secure their worksites ahead of the extreme winds expected across the state.
The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a severe weather warning for most regions, including Melbourne, the south-west, Wimmera, Mallee, north central, and West and East Gippsland.
Peak gusts up to 110km/hr are expected to hit the western part of the state this afternoon and the rest of the state overnight and on Friday.
WorkSafe Director Construction Program Kate Maheras said cranes were particularly vulnerable to severe weather events and must only be operated within their manufacturer specified wind ratings.
“It is vital that the manufacturer’s instructions are followed for stowage or configuration during high winds,” Ms Maheras said.
Buildings under construction, temporary fencing, roof sheets, scaffold planks and unsecured tools can also become dangerous, airborne objects in high winds if not secured.
Employers should ensure all items on their sites are safely stored away, tied down or placed inside permanent structures.
Ms Maheras said loose items could cause serious harm to workers, the public and neighbouring properties if they became airborne, or were blown over.
“Employers must do everything they can to reduce the risks associated with high winds and ensure their site is properly inspected and secured before workers head home,” she said.