"Everyone in the workplace should have an interest in health and safety. Safety in Action 2008 will give you the opportunity to learn the latest and stay up to date," said John Merritt, Executive Director of WorkSafe Victoria.
"Events like this expose you to a hub of expertise and information designed to help you keep your workers and business safe."
Organiser of Safety In Action and Melbourne Materials Handling, Marie Kinsella, said the practical nature of workplace safety meant that it was important for anyone concerned with safety to be aware of the spread of solutions on offer.
"The bottom line is that you need to be able to demonstrate you’ve taken all reasonable steps to make your workplace safe, which in turn means you can’t afford to overlook new solutions as they come onto the market," she said. "In practice, staying across everything is a huge undertaking, which is why we get 350 or more safety suppliers in one spot every year at Safety In Action."
Ms Kinsella said the 12,000 square metres of the Safety In Action and Melbourne Materials Handling shows was allocated to ensure a spread of specialists.
"To be honest, we could fill all three acres with forklifts, boots, hats and goggles but we’re really careful to make sure that visitors get to see everything they need to solve the spectrum of safety challenges, from asbestos removal to working at heights."
The mix of exhibitors had changed over the 11 years since Safety In Action’s inaugural show in 1998, she said, with an increasing emphasis on exceeding rather than simply meeting standards.
"In response to industry’s growing awareness of the productivity benefits of safety, we’ve seen more and more interest in workplace wellness programs, for example," Ms Kinsella said.
"And while manual handling is not new, there’s been an explosion of new technology that both addresses the stress placed on the body and makes warehouses so much more efficient."
In fact, Melbourne Materials Handling will be 25 per cent larger than when it debuted in 2007, co-located with Safety In Action. Organisers are expecting the two shows to again draw more than 10,000 visitors over their three days from April 29 to May 1 in 2008.
High profile exhibitors already signed on by December 2007 include Ansell, Bailey, Bata, Blackwoods, BOC, Bolle, Draeger Safety Pacific, Fallshaw, Life and Rescue International, Linde, Pilz Safe Automation, Saint-Gobain Abrasives, Sick, Siemens, and Toyota Material Handling.
Visit Safety In Action and Melbourne Materials Handling, which run from April 29 to May 1 at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre. The Safety Institute of Australia will host the concurrent Safety In Action conference sponsored by WorkSafe Victoria and featuring 70 speakers including former Telstra chief, Ziggy Switkowski. For more information, phone Australian Exhibitions & Conferences on 03 9654 7773, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.safetyinaction.net.au.