Keep your distance, shearers and shed hands told

New protocols to keep the shears clicking during the coronavirus emergency

Coronavirus
KEEP YOUR DISTANCE: Shearers should work at least 1.5 metres apart during the Covid-19 emergency, according to new wool harvesting protocols.

KEEP YOUR DISTANCE: Shearers should work at least 1.5 metres apart during the Covid-19 emergency, according to new wool harvesting protocols.

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New protocols have been released for wool harvesting in the era of Covid-19.

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Shearers and shed hands should travel to work in separate vehicles, according to new wool harvesting protocols.

They should only travel together if the vehicle (eg, a bus) is big enough to allow the recommended 1.5 metres spacing between them.

The protocols have been developed in a collaboration between AWEX, WoolProducers Australia, Sheep Producers Australia, the Shearing Contractors Association of Australia and the WA Shearing Industry Association.

Everybody involved in shearing operations should keep 1.5 metre distance between them at all times

Wool handlers should wait until the shearer has walked into the catching pen before picking up a fleece.

Woolgrowers are asked to consider only using every second shearing stand and ensure shed staff have their own rooms for camp out jobs.

Meal areas should be large enough to provide 1.5 metre social distancing.

Shed staff should bring their own soap, alcohol-based sanitiser and towel and wash their hands before and after meals and after using the toilet

There should be no sharing of cups and water bottles.

Workers should bring their own storage bags or tubs for their gear.

Woolgrowers should also provide running water (no basins), soap, alcohol-based hand sanitiser and paper towels.

Staff should be reminded each day to practice social distancing and isolation each night in suburban jobs.

If workers feel unwell they should not come to work or leave work immediately.

Contractors and woolgrowers should communicate and manage for lower productivity and higher costs because safety and welfare should be prioritised over profits.

Only essential people should be present in sheds with visitors and children excluded.

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