3 workplace deaths so far in 2020 amid enforcement blitz: MOM

Photos taken by MOM inspectors showing work sites where no means of access were provided, leaving workers to find their own means of getting to their work areas. (PHOTOS: MOM)

SINGAPORE — There have been three workplace deaths since the start of this year, said the Ministry of Manpower on Sunday (19 January).

The first incident involved a worker who was “crushed by a toppled pallet of gas cylinders”, while the second saw a worker hit by a falling construction runner that “fell from a formwork structure”, said MOM in a Facebook post. A third worker died after falling from a tugboat into the sea.

“This does not augur well for workplace safety and health (WSH),” added MOM.

Responding to a spate of eight worker deaths last November, MOM launched a two-month enforcement blitz that began in mid-December.

The move aimed to cover 400 inspections and close to 230 have been conducted so far, said MOM on Sunday. MOM also shared images of common WSH contraventions its inspectors encountered during site visits.

“We issued stop-work orders (SWOs) to four workplaces for hazards which posed imminent danger to workers. In force for at least three weeks, the SWOs will only be lifted after the firms have rectified the lapses and improved their WSH management systems,” said MOM.

“We will sustain the momentum of our enforcement operation, taking a tough stance against those who put workers at risk,” the ministry added.

Noting that some companies may ramp up their activities as the Chinese New Year festive period approaches, MOM also reminded companies here of the need to review work practices and ensure that safeguards are in place.

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