A TasWater employee has championed the implementation of a trolley to reduce the risk of soft tissue injury for workers handling chlorine cylinders.
TasWater Water Services Operator, Mark Cate, said the trolley is purpose-built to move chlorine cylinders at small water and wastewater treatment plants.
“The moving of chlorine cylinders was identified as an Occupational Health and Safety risk in the workplace after an audit was undertaken,” Mr Cate said.
“On the back of the audit, a soft injury prevention taskforce was formed and the development and implementation of a device to safely move chlorine cylinders was a key priority for the taskforce.”
After extensive research, Mark came up with the idea of implementing the trolley, which was identified as industry best practice.
“We went to our suppliers and asked them what measures they take to safely handle the chlorine cylinders,” Mark said.
“They told us they use trolleys from Rotacaster, so we then got in contact with the organisation and ordered one of our own to trial.”
The trial trolley received positive feedback from the service delivery teams in the field, and now TasWater has rolled out eleven trolleys across the state where required and there are two more on the way.
The cylinders weigh 70kg each empty, or around 140kg full, which is well above manual handling weights.
On top of this, the chlorine gas which they are filled with is toxic and highly corrosive, therefore the safe handling of these cylinders is very important.
“The cylinders, although crucial to us delivering safe and reliable drinking water to Tasmanians, are heavy and awkward to move around,” Mr Cate said.
“With the replacement of them occurring almost weekly at plants, the trolleys have been a great help.”
The trolleys only require one person to handle them, and are kitted out with a hydraulic mechanism and magnets which enable staff to remove cylinders safely.
By improving and streamlining practices within TasWater plants, the utility is able to provide essential services to its customers in a safer and more efficient way.