History repeats itself

“Fire’s On” is the warning call that was given before dynamite was blasted as workers tunnelled through hillsides across Australia in the 1800’s.

“Fire’s On ” is also the name of the painting by iconic Australian painter Arthur Stretton that depicts men bringing a fatally  injured worker out from the Lapstone Tunnel which eventually became the Blue Mountains railway link.

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This is an incredible painting  that portrays  a critical moment and shows the harsh landscape and conditions these men worked under.

We have improved working conditions in Australia since that time and we think we all know a lot more about working safely now. However, workplace accidents are still claiming the lives of workers across Australia.   There were 19 work-related notifiable fatalities during April 2014 — 13 male workers, and 4 male and 2 female bystanders*.

Transport, postal & warehousing workplaces accounted for 10 fatalities, 3 fatalities occurred in Agriculture, forestry & fishing workplaces, 2 fatalities each occurred in Construction and Mining workplaces and 1 fatality each occurred in Accommodation & food services and Other services workplaces.

Granted there is an incredible improvement since tunnelling the Blue Mountains Link in the nineteen century, but we still have a long way to go.


Safe Work Australia “Notifiable Fatalities Monthly Report April 2014