Worksafe inspectors have found the machinery repair and maintenance sector has some safety issues, with concerns raised about hazardous substances, mobile plant and emergency procedures.
A recent proactive inspection program visited 128 workplaces in Perth and around the state where machinery and equipment is repaired, with Worksafe inspectors doling out 980 improvement notices, three prohibition notices and 78 verbal directions.
Worksafe director of industrial and regional Chris Kirwin said one of the reasons for the inspection program was an 80% increase over five years in the number of injuries that kept employees off work for more than a day, and a "whopping" 230% rise in the number of injuries that kept employees off work for 60 days or more.
Kirwin said inspectors were surprised at the number of workers found operating mobile plant without a high risk work licence.
Of the 983 notices issued 210 were related to hazardous substances, with 105 of those given because the workshop did not have a register of hazardous substances.
There were 160 notices related to mobile plant and vehicle movement, with most of those concerning the maintenance of mobile plant and the keeping of records of prestart checks and maintenance.
Another 48 notices related to emergency procedures, with 57 related to a failure to develop and clearly display evacuation procedures.
Kirwin said the number of workers found to be performing high risk work without the relevant licence was quite alarming.
"As a result, inspectors will be paying extra attention to high risk work licences in all workplaces they visit, and this sector in particular will be closely monitored," he said.
"We firmly believe that raising the safety awareness of everyone in the workplace is the best way in which to lessen the risk of work-related injury and illness."