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Workplace Health & Safety

Making Waves Foundation A dock with a rope near a body of water, emphasizing workplace safety.

2. Workplace Health and Safety

2.1 Introduction

This policy:

  • Shows the commitment of MWF’s management and staff to health and safety.
  • Aims to remove or reduce the risks to the health, safety, and welfare of all; staff, clients, contractors and visitors, and anyone else who may be affected by our business operations and
  • Aims to ensure all work activities are done safely.

2.2 Responsibility

Management is responsible for providing and maintaining:

  • A safe working environment;
  • Safe systems of work;
  • Equipment and substances in safe condition;
  • Facilities for the welfare of all staff and
  • Information, instruction, training, and supervision needed to make sure that all staff are safe from injury and risks to their health.

Staff must:

  • Ensure their own personal health and safety, and that of others in the workplace;
  • Comply with any reasonable directions (such as safe work procedures, wearing personal protective equipment) given by management for health and safety;
  • Ensure a safe working environment and
  • Make known to management any concerns related to workplace health and safety.

2.3 Operating Areas

Sydney: The usual sailing area used by MWF short day programs includes any area on chart Aus 200 and 15 nm offshore of that chart.

Melbourne: Operations generally take part within Port Phillip Bay.

Geelong: The usual sailing area used by MWF short day programs includes the Corio Bay chart Aus 157.

Newcastle: The usual sailing area used by MWF short-day programs includes the harbour & 3nm or area on chart Aus 207.

Brisbane: The usual sailing area used by MWF short day programs on Moreton Bay is chart Aus 236.

Outreach Campaigns: Sailing with clients will take place within designated harbour and estuary environments as determined in the annual planning of each campaign, with any offshore activity being confined to within 15nm of the harbour for the duration of that program.

Deliveries: On occasion, MWF vessels are delivered along the coast, and manning levels etc. will comply with the levels listed later in this document.

Offshore Racing: On occasion MWF vessels are involved in offshore racing and manning levels etc. will comply with the levels listed later in this document.

2.4 Boats

Our boats are maintained to the highest standards and are inspected each year by the General Manager and On-water Operations Manager. Vessels will only be crewed according to MWF Guidelines and ratios of staff to clients as outlined below in Manning Levels.

MWF Currently runs several Boats:

Boat NameDetails
Kayle54ft Lyons grand prix offshore racing yacht
WotEvaA high-performance Nelson Marek designed TP52
97Ninety-Seven, a Farr 47
JoySayer 44

2.5 Crew Levels on board

The table below outlines the recommended manning levels. The Skipper must decide on the crew requirements for that day, taking into consideration the weather conditions, the crew capabilities, the clients that are onboard and any other factors that could impact the safety of operations at sea. The suggestion is for 6 crew as per below, but this can be altered to 5 crew at Skipper’s discretion. Exclusively for Melbourne programs, 4 experienced crew can be the minimum onboard when staying in the Victoria Harbour/Docklands area and not passing Bolte Bridge.

Sailing ActivityMinimum CrewRecommended Crew
Winds of Joy1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
Up to 2 others incl 1 guest
Winds of Change1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
Up to 2 others incl 1 guest
Wright of Passage (On water)1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
Up to 2 others incl 1 guest
Offshore Delivery1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
Up to 1 other
Offshore Race1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
1 CL1
1 Skipper
1 2IC
1 CL3
2 CL2
Up to 2 others

2.6 First Aid

First aid is an important aspect of Workplace Health and Safety. MWF is committed to providing a safe and healthy work environment for staff, clients, contractors, and visitors. MWF will endeavor to provide appropriate and adequate first aid treatment in the event of a person sustaining a work-related injury or illness. In recognition of this, MWF is committed to providing suitably trained First Aid Officers, together with first aid facilities to administer first aid treatment.

This policy applies to all staff and contractors of MWF and to visitors.

MWF will systematically identify causes of work injury and work-related illness and assess the risk of work injuries and work-related illness occurring. The appropriate first aid facilities and training will be determined, evaluated and provided.

MWF will meet first aid legislative requirements as a minimum standard.

First aid facilities will be maintained on a regular basis.

It is the responsibility of the General Manager to ensure that:

  • adequate and appropriate first aid facilities are provided;
  • appropriate and adequate training is arranged for First Aid Officers and
  • First Aid Officers’ training is up to date and their certificates current.

If a person requires first aid treatment the nearest First Aid Officer must be contacted to administer such treatment.

The First Aid Officer should record the following information:

  • name and location of person;
  • type of injury, if known;
  • assistance provided (as below) and
  • urgency of matter.

The First Aid Officer will attend to the injured or ill person in accordance with their training.

Where an injury is of a more serious nature and requires the person to be referred to a doctor or taken to hospital, the First Aid Officer will determine the appropriate transport.

The First Aid Officer must record details of all injuries using the Incident Form, in Forms. Email completed form to On-water Operations Manager and General Manager.

2.7 Reporting Accidents/Incident/Near Miss

Details of any incident, accident or near miss are to be recorded on the form contained in Forms and passed to the relevant Coordinator. A review of any incident, accident or near miss shall be initiated by the General Manager to understand what exactly happened and to ensure that there is not a repetition of the incident in the future.

In the case of a serious incident the Skipper or most senior person shall contact the General Manager at the earliest opportunity and provide details.

In the case of a critical Incident (such as a fatality) see 2.9 below.

2.8 Next of Kin details

Should a next of kin need to be contacted, all details are recorded on program booking forms. These can be accessed through the MWF Office. A copy will also be carried on board any boat that is being delivered offshore to other locations.

2.9 Critical Incident Policy

Should a major incident occur leading to serious injury or fatality the General Manager must be notified as soon as possible and the current guidelines for dealing with a major incident should be followed.

  • Your priority is, of course, the safety of clients and instructors.
  • If the police are required ring 000.
  • If Marine Rescue are required, contact on VHF 16 or on 9450 2468 (NSW) or 000.
  • Get statements from witnesses as soon as possible (certainly within 24h).
  • This information should then be used to investigate the incident.
  • An Investigation Report may then be produced and distributed to all staff.

The Press

  • The General Manager may produce a written statement that you can give to the press. E.g. ” Making Waves Foundation regret to announce the death of a crew member who fell overboard at night from a boat…when…where. Our deepest sympathy to the relatives etc. A full statement will be issued at 2 pm tomorrow” (giving time to collate the information)
  • No Staff member should talk to the press and clients should be discouraged from doing so.
  • The General Manager should be the only person talking to the press and will manage this.
  • The General Manager will maintain a record of who he/she has spoken to, who has contacted him/her etc.

In all circumstances the Emergency Communications provisions within the Communications Policy will be followed including the timing for reporting the accident or incident.

2.10 Adverse Conditions

Should dangerous weather conditions (restricted visibility, lightening, F6 or above) arise whilst on the water, the skipper will seek shelter as appropriate and inform the On-water Operations Manager or delegated person. If there is a forecast of severe weather, then the skipper will decide on the best course of action for the day’s activities. 

Further to weather risks the skipper must take into account extreme weather events such as temperature and pollution e.g. smoke from bushfires.

A helpful guide on air quality is available at https://www.dpie.nsw.gov.au/air-quality.

A more general guide on outdoor activities and conditions can be found at https://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/topic/weather.

In general, if a weather forecast is received prior to sailing that indicates wind speeds more than 20 knots or a Strong Wind Warning, then the sailing should be replaced by on shore activities. If the skipper wishes to continue to provide offshore activity in these conditions, then he/she should discuss this with the Operations Manager or delegated person before commencing activities.

2.11 Skippers

Skippers must have been assessed by MWF to be up to the required standard to deliver their programs in accordance with the competencies set out in 5.1 and 5.2. They must also have a current and valid first aid certificate and WWCC for the state they are working in.

Skippers are expected to uphold the highest standards of conduct within MWF as well as be competent and skilled leaders in the program environment.

Skippers are expected to maintain excellent communications with the MWF management and administration teams and support MWF in all endeavours to deliver safe, effective, and enjoyable programs.

2.12 Further Risk Management

The risk assessments for all activities are conducted in accordance with the document MWF Risk Management Plan prepared in accordance with the Risk Management Policy. The Risk Management Policy will be reviewed at least once every two years and dated accordingly. 

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