PASIR GUDANG: Some RM1.32mil in penalties and compounds was imposed by the state Occupational Safety and Health Department (DOSH) on employers and contractors in the construction sector last year.
Johor Unity and Human Resources Committee chairman R.Vidyananthan said that about 40 employers were slapped with penalties amounting to RM995,500 for various offences under the Occupational Safety and Health Act.
He said most were charged for failing to provide a safe workplace environment.
“Last year, 257 compounds were also issued to contractors for offences under the Factory and Machinery Act.
“The compounds, which amounted to RM328,000, included for failing to instal safety equipment at high-rise sites, uncovered holes and operating a crane without a competent operator,” he said.
Vidyananthan said this after launching the state-level Occupational Safety and Health week at Eco Tropics Sales Gallery here.
He added that in the first half of this year, DOSH had issued 45 compounds following inspections at construction sites.
He also suggested that workers who fail to adhere to safety regulations at the workplace and cause a fatal accident should be held accountable.
Vidyananthan said that a check showed that DOSH had taken punitive action only against employers and not workers for the past five years.
“In my opinion, it is reasonable that individuals found to have been careless and who took an easy way out to carry out their duties in terms of safety should also be taken to court,” he said.
He added that 41 construction workers had died due to accidents involving machines or fallen objects at the workplace in Johor since 2010.
“Only last week, a worker was smashed to death by a hook block at a construction site in Gelang Patah.
“It seems that each accident at the workplace reflects the ineffectiveness of health and safety management,” he said, urging employers and workers in the construction sector to take proactive measures on the matter.