What You Should Know About the NSW White Card

What is the NSW White Card?

This is your General Construction Induction Card! In order to get this, you need to complete the White Card course which will educate you in the areas of safety awareness and common hazards on construction sites.

 

Do I have to complete this training?

If you want to work in the New South Wales construction industry, then yes the White Card training must be completed! You will also need to show your NSW White Card when requested while on-site. Your employer is also required to provide you with other training such as a Site Induction and Task Specific inductions however your White Card is the minimum requirement.

 

Does everyone need to complete this training?

General induction training is recommended for a variety of people involved in a construction project. This includes:

  • People who carry out construction work, including site managers/supervisors, surveyors, labourers and trades persons
  • People who access operational construction zones unaccompanied or not directly supervised by an inducted person, and
  • People whose employment causes them to routinely enter operational construction zones (for example, Work Health and Safety (WHS) Inspectors).

 

I’m moving to NSW from another state. Will my card be valid?

The good news is – The White Card is a nationally accredited qualification and meets the requirements for GIT under clause 317 of the WHS Regulation. So if you have a White Card, this will be valid in NSW and anywhere in Australia.

If you have a previous General Induction Construction Card which is currently valid and recognised in your current state and it has not been cancelled, suspended or expired, then yes, this will be recognised in New South Wales!

You may have to produce your interstate White Card if requested by a NSW Inspector. They may also ask you to provide a sample of your usual signature. If you are carrying out work in the NSW construction industry and you can’t produce an interstate card on request’, this could result in an inspector issuing an improvement or penalty notice to the person in control of the site or the construction work.[1]

 

The bad news is – Any cards from another jurisdiction will only be regarded as valid if you have not been out of the industry for more than two years (as per clause 316 of the WHS Regulation).

 

What if I move to another state? Will my card be valid?

As the White Card is nationally accredited this will be recognised in any state or territory across Australia.

If you have a NSW GIT card issued under the WHS Regulation from 1 January 2012 or a construction induction card issued between 1 September 2009 to 31 December 2011, this will be recognised throughout Australia. [2]

The former NSW construction induction cards that were issued between 29 March 2004 and 31 August 2009 are recognised in all jurisdictions other than Western Australia. [3]

 

How do I complete this training?

It’s easy! This is an online course that will take you between about 2 – 6 hours to complete, depending on your pace. Once you complete your assessment successfully, a Statement of Attainment will be issued to you immediately. A nationally recognised QLD White Card that is valid in NSW will be posted to your address in the mail and we can also provide you with your unique White Card number if needed urgently.

 

What does the course cover?

In this course you will learn:

  • The roles and responsibilities of Employers, Workers, Work Health & Safety (WHS) Inspectors, WHS Advisors and WHS Committee’s so that you know how things should be done and who to contact when you’re on-site
  • Types of Australian Laws and what could happen if you or your worksite is in breach
  • How to prevent and/or manage workplace incidents so that if something happens while you’re on site, you know what to do
  • How to identify and manage hazards and risks in construction. This is important because you have the ability to prevent or minimise the impact of you or a fellow worker getting hurt at work
  • Workplace communication and reporting
  • What high risk activities are and what work license you need to have in order to carry out these tasks
  • Emergency management procedures so that you know what you need to do or where you need to be in the case of an emergency
  • Working with hazardous substances – So, if you’re on-site and required to work around hazardous substances such as asbestos, which can have life threatening affects, you will know the safety precautions you should take.

 

Why is this training so important?

In the five years from 2007 – 2012, 211 construction workers died from work-related injuries. In the construction industry, the total number of deaths equates to 4.34 fatalities per 100,000 workers which is nearly twice the national rate of 2.29.

  • Falls from height related to almost 25% of these fatalities (this included falls from buildings, ladders and scaffolding).
  • Vehicle incidents related to 16% of these fatalities (this included incidents where the worker was in a car or truck).
  • Being hit by moving objects and being hit by falling objects related to 27% of these fatalities. [4]

 

In the same five years from 2007 – 2012, the construction industry accounted for 11% of all serious workers compensation claims. On average, there were 39 claims each day from employees who needed one or more weeks off work because of work-related injury or disease. [5]

New South Wales alone reported an average of 19.4 serious claim incidents per 1000 employees in 2011/2012.[6]

The White Card course intends to help you understand why safety is important and how you can think about safety as you carry out your construction job every day in order to reduce the occurrence of deaths and injuries.

Safety is important, because you are important and safety in the workplace can seriously affect your quality of life!

With an ever increasing focus on construction and development in the State, it is imperative that appropriate safety training is provided and effective safety procedures carried out and taken seriously on construction sites!

 

 

[1] http://www.workcover.nsw.gov.au/media/publications/health-and-safety/recognition-of-general-construction-induction-training-cards-fact-sheet

[2] http://www.workcover.nsw.gov.au/media/publications/health-and-safety/recognition-of-general-construction-induction-training-cards-fact-sheet

[3] http://www.workcover.nsw.gov.au/media/publications/health-and-safety/recognition-of-general-construction-induction-training-cards-fact-sheet

[4] http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/SWA/about/Publications/Documents/430/Construction-Fact-Sheet-2011-12.pdf

[5] http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/SWA/about/Publications/Documents/430/Construction-Fact-Sheet-2011-12.pdf

[6] http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/SWA/about/Publications/Documents/430/Construction-Fact-Sheet-2011-12.pdf