Less fatalities after workplace safety law enforcement

Hakim Hayat

Since the enforcement of the Workplace Safety and Health Order 2009 in 2013, the number of work-related deaths has declined from 12 to four between 2014 and 2020, Minister of Energy Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mat Suny bin Haji Mohd Hussein said at the 17th Legislative Council (LegCo) session yesterday.

The minister was responding to LegCo member Yang Berhormat Khairunnisa binti Haji Ash’ari on issues that still arise in safety in industries and how the order that was introduced has reduced the number of workplace accidents and deaths.

The LegCo member cited statistics from the Safety, Health and Environment National Authority (SHENA) in 2020 which reported 62 workplace accidents in the past seven years and asked if there were any plans to boost enforcement in workplaces to minimise risk.

The minister added that SHENA is targetting the reduction of the number of deaths in the workplace to zero by 2035, which requires the cooperation of all parties to follow the regulations set in the order.

He revealed that the ministry is formulating a number of new regulations to regulate high risk jobs including working at height and crane operations. “SHENA has also issued a number of guidelines such as the Lifting Operation Guideline; Workplace Health and Safety Guideline in Construction Sites; and safe use of scaffolding.”

He said these regulations and guidelines in high-risk workplaces, will enhance safety and reduce the rate of deaths in the workplace.

He warned that action will be taken to any parties defying the laws.

“For minor offences, SHENA will advise the individual or company. If an offence gives rise to danger, SHENA will issue a Stop Work Order or Remedial Order in the workplace.

“For major incidents involving deaths, a prosecution process might be initiated by SHENA,”
he added.

Legislative Council member Yang Berhormat Khairunnisa binti Haji Ash’ari. PHOTO: INFOFOTO