Pre-start meeting tips


Pre-start meeting tips


These are also referred to as; toolbox talks, (daily) site inductions, or line-side briefings. It doesn’t matter what you call them they are generally a good idea.

So what should Pre-Starts contain?

Pre-start meetings should confirm:
  • Safe workplace per safety inspections and walk-through checks.
  • Safe tools and equipment per safety inspections and pre-use checks.
  • Safe systems of workper SWMS or work instructions.
  • All workers trained (licensed as required) and supervisor/ duty manager present or contactable.
  • The above is based on the primary duty of care for workplace safety as imposed by legislation in each jurisdiction. These elements are important and not optional, but experience tells us that more is required.

    After serious accidents we often see the workers are critical of; the company, their supervisor and managers, and the conditions in their work area, but say they did not voice their concerns earlier because they felt it would not be received well or acted upon. 


    Pre-Start Tips

    In your pre-start meetings, we suggest you include things like:
  • Are there any unacceptable hazards in your work area?
  • Are you adequately trained to do your tasks?
  • Are you OK to do your job today? e.g. sufficiently fit and healthy and no excessive stress or fatigue.
  • Is there anything else you need in order to work safely?
  • Do you need any assistance to do your tasks today?
  • Note: You can mix these up and change occasionally to keep fresh.

    Why is asking these type of questions important? Because after a serious incident your current “happy workers” will tell police and safety inspectors things like:

    That hazard has been there for months”, “I was not properly trained”, “I was fatigued by work and stressed by the over-bearing supervisor and forgot to ….”, “no one asked me if I needed help and I didn’t feel I could ask”.

    It is always best to flush any worker concerns out into the open and deal with them in a transparent, fair and timely fashion.

    note: Site safety inductions are different to pre-start briefings, as inductions are typically only conducted once per year, and typically contain items like:

  • Safety co-ordination e.g. departmental manager, safety co-ordinator and H&S Reps.
  • Access to site including parking and workplace facilities e.g. lunch room & toilets.
  • Key activities occurring on site (today), parties involved and timing
  • Site specific hazards e.g. chemicals, powerlines, asbestos, or temporary precautions.
  • Any special site rules including; permits required, PPE, or traffic management.
  • Incident & hazard reporting procedures for the site e.g. location of forms
  • First aid arrangements for the site including; first aiders, kit locations and contact details.
  • Emergency procedures for site including evacuation alarm operation and location, exit routes, assembly points and any special contingencies.
  • Any other location specific instructions.
  • Have a question? Call us:

    +61 (03) 8544 4300

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