Rail industry news (Australia, New Zealand), Passenger Rail, Industry Safety, Operations and Maintenance

CRR workers back at sites for safety reviews

CRR safety


Cross River Rail (CRR) has confirmed that workers returned to all worksites this morning to participate in safety reviews.

Work at the Boggo Road worksite had been suspended following an incident last week, in which a scaffolder fell from height.

Union members had gathered in the city in protest, while safety pauses took place across the project’s other worksites.

A CRR statement said a structured plan has been established for the safety reviews, which are being conducted with input from the on-site contractors, unions and site-based health and safety representatives.

The process, which includes addressing the workforce, site inspections and reviewing documentation such as safe work method statements, is progressing separately at each site.

CRR said that in some instances, workers who were not required for safety review activities have left their sites, and will return as needed.

Representatives from the authority have attended sites to observe and ensure the on-site contractor engages constructively with the workforce and its representatives.

Work will recommence across sites in stages following consultation and feedback.

Safety record

In relation to the wider project, CRR reiterated the enormity and complexity of the project, with around 3000 workers, 17 separate sites, and more than 24 million hours worked to date.

Despite the project’s size and scale, its safety record is objectively and significantly better than industry averages.

CRR said the following measures support its safety record:

  • Lost time injury frequency rate (LTIFR) –
    • Cross River Rail (as at June 30, 2023) – 0.53
    • Heavy engineering construction sector average (Safe Work Australia) – 9.2
  • Total recordable injury frequency rate (TRIFR) –
    • Cross River Rail (as at June 30, 2023) – 3.74
    • Office of Federal Safety Commissioner Accredited Scheme Companies – 6.88

And because of the project’s size and scale, it is not unreasonable to expect an intense focus from Workplace Health and Safety Queensland.

“Safety is – and always has been – Cross River Rail’s top priority,” the statement said.

“When it comes to safety, we welcome opportunities – including the focus of the safety regulator – that help the project maintain its strong safety record and culture of continual safety improvement.

“Of course, the recent incident is a reminder we cannot be complacent, and we expect the on-site contractors to uphold the highest standards.”