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Focus on Health & Safety
29 Mar 2016


NZTA held branch meetings throughout the country in March with a focus on the ways your ACC can be minimised, with specific information on Health & Safety compliance. Attendance wasn’t great, so we can only assume that most trainers are compliant and hopefully taking advantage of the ACC discount available. It is understood that Worksafe have recruited an additional 250 assessors, so they will be out in force checking up on employers.

Other ways to minimise compliance costs and ACC levies were discussed and  some good ideas were suggested by members that NZTA are looking into. These include:

  • Health & Safety signage – NZTA will endeavour to source a suitable entry sign for trainers and intend to have these sponsored so they can be provided free to members.
  • Safety Equipment – NZTA are looking into a discount for helmets and vests and will advise accordingly.
  • First Aid kits – NZTA are looking into kits at a discounted price – both for your stables and your truck/float
  • First Aid courses – NZTA will co-ordinate with NZTR on some industry specific First Aid courses throughout the country.
  • Independent Contractors – NZTA have provided legal information for members as to whether they can move their staff from employees to independent contractors who would be responsible for their own tax and ACC.
  • Safety Training – based on information from ACC on where the most injuries from accidents are occurring, NZTA are attempting to ensure online training is available to minimise these accidents occurring which include quad bikes and heavy lifting..
  • An industry fund – NZTA will continue to investigate this possibility so those who are paying their ACC through the books are not subsidising those who are avoiding it by paying cash to trackwork riders and staff
  • ACC Cover plus Extra – This is something trainers need to consider, particularly if they and their partner/spouse do not ride. ACC CoverPlus Extra is an optional product that lets self-employed people and non PAYE shareholder employees negotiate a pre-agreed level of lost earnings compensation. This way you know exactly how much you’ll receive each week if you are injured and can’t work – whether the injury is work-related or not. It is duties based, so rather than pay the current levy for racehorse trainers, you can advise of your duties and if you’re not a rider are likely for a much lower rate. You can check it out on the website as follows:
  • Transition to Work Grants for purchase of safety equipment. Trainers should check out whether new staff qualify for these grants as it is understood they can pay for vests, helmets and saddles. To check if you have staff who qualify, go to:
  • Reporting hazards at training/racetracks – Trainers should ensure Clubs are made aware of any hazards they may identify as Clubs must be compliant also

Mike Osborne from Countrywide Providence Group was a guest at the meetings and has now assisted over 70 trainers to become H&S compliant – and apply for ACC discounts in a practical, efficient and effective way.

This is a three step process where a trainer completes a simple tick the box form regarding what equipment is at their training establishment.

Someone will then visit you and identify any further hazards and advise of any upgrading and signage required.

Mike then produces your own personalised Health & Safety manual and all the forms and documentation you will require to be compliant. He may also be available to run you through your first “toolbox” meeting with staff.

Packs are available for those who were unable to attend. Just contact Mike direct: or 0800318177 or 0274416100 or 033181776