HEALTH A VI­TAL TOOL OF TRADES

Townsville Bulletin - - NATION -

TRADIES are be­ing crip­pled by pre­ventable in­juries, fu­elling calls for those re­garded as “in­dus­trial ath­letes” to step up and bet­ter pro­tect their health and liveli­hood.

While tradies make up just 30 per cent of Aus­tralia’s work­force, they suf­fer a mas­sive 60 per cent of work­place in­juries, Safe Work Aus­tralia fig­ures show.

Aus­tralian Phys­io­ther­apy As­so­ci­a­tion’s na­tional chair of oc­cu­pa­tional health group Dave Hall urged work­ers to not take risks at work and seek help for in­juries with­out de­lay.

“Phys­ios are al­ways com­ment­ing among each other how a self- em­ployed tradie has to lose a limb be­fore they stag­ger into physio clinic to get as­sess­ment,” he said.

Tradies mostly suf­fer in­juries to the lower back, neck, shoul­ders and knees. They usu­ally lose about five to six weeks from work each year.

APA is launch­ing Tradies Na­tional Health Month on Au­gust 1 to urge those in the in­dus­try to con­sider their health be­fore they pick up their tools.

“Get­ting your­self fit and phys­i­cally re­silient is im­por­tant,” Mr Hall said.

Roofer Aaron Meilak ( pic­tured with Corey Rochester, right) en­sures he is fit for work with cross fit. “You’ve got no choice re­ally but to be fit or you can’t do the work,” he said.

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