Our union is concerned about the pollution in Cherry Lake. The fire in Laverton North on the weekend is contained but the chemicals from it are not. This is a potential hazard for our members working and living in Hobsons Bay LGA. Even though the Council is not responsible for the fire it is responsible for the health and safety of workers who may be exposed to hazards near the lake. Our interest is based on the OHS Act (2004).

If you are directed to work in the vicinity of the pollution, then it’s time to review and revise your system of work. An incident such as loss of containment of hazardous substances means that the usual risk assessments (JSA, SWMS) may need to be improved to reduce the likelihood of injury and/or illness. The duty to do this is the employer’s (s21) and they must consult with workers (s35). It can be safe to work at the lake despite the incident.  Prevention is the best OHS and it may be necessary to increase the controls of the hazard. BEFORE you work at the site. The key is to be isolated from the hazard by a combination of engineering, procedures and PPE.

The impact on wildlife and subsequent reduced community access to the area is devastating. We will monitor the EPA’s response to this situation. If you need support during the response to the incident contact the ASU at info@asuvictas.com.au

There will be a union meeting with City Services in the Parks Office this Thursday at 9:30am.

By encouraging your workmates to join the ASU we will have a stronger voice for workers at Hobsons Bay City Council. It is easy for anyone who is not yet a member to join online at www.asu.asn.au/asujoin

For further information please contact:
ASU Organiser Cindy O’Connor | coconnor@asuvictas.com.au

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