Making workers safe is their aim

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Les Heads has grassroots experience in a variety of jobs from shearing, general farming through to working on an oil rig in the North Sea. This hands-on experience coupled with a master’s degree in health and safety makes him ideally suited to his business venture HeadSafe Ltd in Gore. The business, which has recently opened an office in Irk St, is owned by Mr Heads and his wife Tina. Mr Heads was brought up in Edendale and has worked in various rural roles including shearing, farming, lambing, working at the Alliance Group Mataura plant tannery and haymaking, and in such far-flung places as Mozambique in a sand mine. The couple are keen to help employers big or small implement measures that ensure a safe work environment for everyone. Mrs Heads’ skills complement those of Mr Heads. She has a high level of business and administration experience and a master’s degree in business management administration. Mr Heads is keen to ensure workers are safe and can return home to their families at night. ‘‘We want to work with industries to help them understand their hazards in their workplace,’’ Mr Heads said. Having a fresh set of eyes viewing a workplace meant potential hazards which could go unnoticed could be identified, he said. ‘‘Every single system that we do is tailored to that person. We won’t give them something that is off the shelf or generic,’’ Mr Heads said. Adopting common sense accident mitigation measures was not new, he said. Many businesses had had health and safety measures in force for decades. The couple were keen to demystify health and safety regulations and let people know compliance did not have to be difficult, he said. HeadSafe could review clients’ present health and safety management plans to check they were compliant with the legislation. He could train the employees in the system, either on-site or in the Irk St office. Mr Heads has recently designed a set of playing cards as a training tool, showing the various hazards that workers face on work sites. For example, the queens in the pack show pictures of the dangers of working in a trench. ‘‘We look at the different ways you can get caught in a trench and then we can do some training and say, actually, this is the right way of doing trenching.’’ Dr Bill Glass, who has mentored Mr Heads for the past 27 years, is a health adviser for the business, and administrator Brittney Andrews has just joined the team