A Matter of Balance: Regulating Safety

Dr Bryce Wilkinson
16 July, 2015

The construction industry has made some substantial and laudable moves towards better safety practices. But recent changes in WorkSafe regulations, mandating extensive and expensive scaffolding for roof repairs and new builds adds, indicatively, from two to seven thousand dollars per project. The regulations were imposed with no cost-benefit assessment.

WorkSafe has not struck the right balance in its scaffolding regulations, which have been spectacularly expensive. We are imposing an unnecessary burden on home owners and home buyers at an exceptionally inopportune time.

And this can come at a real cost. Homeowners already delay and defer essential home maintenance and repairs because of the cost. Adding to those costs will result in further delayed projects and leakier homes, or DIY projects that would have been conducted more safely and effectively by a building professional.

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