Snack Brands is one of Australia’s largest suppliers of snack foods and their Blacktown manufacturing plant must maintain 100% manufacturing capacity on a daily basis to keep peckish Australians happy. The plant has serviceable equipment integral to the smooth running of the plant located on their rooftop which require regular maintenance access.
Snack Brands management identified the frequent access at height presented an ongoing risk and decided to take a risk-based approach beginning with a risk assessment to take stock of where they were and what to do next.
The risk assessment was performed to identify the risks, rate the risks and assign risk ratings. Each risk was met with a control using the Hierarchy of Control to select the appropriate control.
Snack Brands made a conscious decision upfront to select high level controls as they provide the greatest protection for workers, lowest level of input for workers and their running costs and lifetime costs far outweigh the upfront costs.
While a ladder with a ladder line was the cheaper control, the cost of inductions and training, regular inspections of the harnesses, ladders and ladder line over the lifetime of the system just didn’t add up.
Snack Brands had to think about their people and the contractors that access the building. Sending workers up a ladder with heavy tools didn’t sound right, or safe.
The decision was made to install a Defender™ Staircase which complied to AS 1657.
Snack Brand workers and contractors now enjoy ready and safe access, without constraint. No special training, inductions or hidden ongoing costs. It worked a treat.