OSH alert - MVA rollover (June 2016)

Key learnings from a High Potential incident.

Driving incident icon

OSH Alert #479

Date of incident: 04 June 2016

Safety Flash issued: 08 June 2016


What happened?

MVA rolloverA contractor, returning to the worksite after purchasing additional parts from a nearby town, turned off the sealed surface onto a gravel road. 3.3 kilometers along the gravel road the contractor lost control of the vehicle. The vehicle, a land-cruiser, then skidded and rolled over.

The contractor exited the vehicle and tried to call for assistance, but as there was no communication coverage in the area, decided to stay with the vehicle. The project manager became concerned the person had not returned, so they left the worksite and came across the overturned vehicle and contractor. The project manager took the contractor to hospital for observation and medical treatment. The contractor received a minor concussion in the roll-over.

 Why did this happen?

  • Poor planning resulted in the work crew not having all the required materials on hand. A member of the crew had to make a special trip to the nearest town to purchase the shortfall in construction materials. It was on the return trip that the accident occurred.
  • The contractor driver did not have experience in driving the land-cruiser and combined with the vehicle’s speed, the gravel road and a washout on the bend, this led to a loss of traction and the vehicle skidding. The drivers over correction during the skid resulted in the vehicle roll-over.

What will the contractors do to stop this from happening again?

  • Implement 4-wheel driver training for work crews
  • Improve job planning by implementing a project inventory tool
  • Modify journey management plans to include a scheduled call/text at nominated locations and if not received, initiate emergency response plan

What will our organisation do to stop this from happening again?

Work with the Operations Centre to investigate the opportunity for our contractors working on discrete contracts to access the Water Corporation’s Lone Worker system. This will include:

  • How do contractors register on the system?
  • How do they link to the appropriate escalation lists?
  • How is the contractor removed from Lone Worker at the end of the contract?

We will also develop and implement a contractor HSE Management Pack which includes risk assessment of activities and job planning.


What key learnings can you discuss with your team to stop this from happening again?

When discussing this incident with your teams, it’s important to focus on the risk of driving, and to reinforce the need for a heightened awareness as driving conditions can change in an instant.

Discussions should encompass the following:

  • Preparing a JSEA for driving activities
  • Off road driving competency
  • Who and how to make contact for help in remote areas
  • Ensure all jobs are planned and that the required resources are available before commencing work

Further information

If you would like further information about anything included in this HPI OSH Alert, please contact Charis Neumann, Senior OSH Analyst Incidents on 6339 6629.