Ways you can help lower the amount of workers getting injured in the manufacturing industry.

Workers involved in welding, fabrication, metal casting, and machining suffer a range of injuries such as burns, amputations, fractures, dislocations, lacerations, concussion, dental and eye injuries, noise-induced hearing loss and respiratory disease.

What is the impact of injuries?

The most common injuries happening in the manufacturing industry are soft tissue injuries, eg sprains and strains, amputations, cuts and puncture wounds, fractures and dislocations and noise-induced hearing loss.

The manufacturing industry represents around 25% of all claims for noise-induced hearing loss, more than any other industry. Go to Noise-induced hearing loss for more information.

Concern about high rates of injury and occupational disease in the metal manufacturing industry has led to the formation and continued engagement of the Metal Manufacturing Safer Industry Group.

This group focuses on helping industry members to get injury rates down. The Manufacturing Sector Action Plan 2010 – 2013 (external link) was developed by the then Department of Labour (now Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment) in consultation with the manufacturing sector, who have signed a Partners in Action pledge to reduce workplace injuries.

Contact for more information.

How you can reduce injuries

Make sure you and your employees go home injury free each day.

The ACC4261 Metal industry guidelines for safe work (PDF 11M) provides employers, supervisors and workers in the metal industry with practical tips they can use in everyday work practices to improve safety, reduce occupational illness and bring down injury rates.

You can order the electronic copy of the ‘ACC4389 Metal Industry Guidelines for Safe Work’ on CD, by emailing The guidelines can also be downloaded in 14 PDF sections, go to PDFs of the metal industry guidelines.

Health and safety management systems

Remember everybody has a role to play in preventing and reducing injuries in the workplace.

Effective health and safety performance involves more than just having a management plan and systems. It requires everyone in the workplace to be committed to and involved in health and safety knowledge and practices at all levels of the business. It requires that health and safety be fully integrated into everyday work practices.

We have a range of tools and resources to help you identify and manage hazards typical to your workplace. Use them together with the Health and Safety Improvement Cycle and Incident Investigation Model to establish health and safety management systems, which can help to keep your business injury-free.

WorkSafe Matters – a new health and safety DVD

WorkSafe Matters is a health and safety leadership initiative that focuses on reducing injuries in the workplace. It was developed in partnership with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the Metal Industry Safety Group.

WorkSafe Matters is designed for leaders who are responsible for the implementation of health and safety practices within the workplace.

The DVD includes:

Personal action plans – templates for managers and health and safety managers to record their personal action plans:

  • Model the way
  • Actions that show
  • Make one change a week.

Profile of best practice poster – for managers and health and safety managers to keep a record of examples of best practices to communicate to employees:

  • Managers and leaders
  • Health and safety managers.

Wallet card overview – for staff to use as a reminder of health and safety:

  • Model the way
  • Actions that show
  • Make once change a week.

‘Well Done’ card – for managers, health and safety managers and staff to use to recognise positive contributions to health and safety in the workplace.

WorkSafe Matters: Metal manufacturing industry DVD summary (PDF 14.5M) provides a preview of the contents of the DVD.

To order a copy of the DVD, contact

ACC5709 Frontline Leadership CD

This practical e-learning resource is for hands-on supervisors and leaders.

This CD contains six e-learning scenarios and activity based modules that give you advice and tips on how to fulfil your role as a supervisor or leader on the frontline.

It covers topics you deal with on a regular basis, eg building a positive workplace culture, effective work systems, communication, and a healthy and safe workplace.

To order a copy of the CD, contact

Metal Industry Guidelines for Safe Work (ACC5267) – an interactive learning package

This interactive reference manual has guidelines that are a quick and easy to use – it’s best to use it alongside workplace training sessions and activity assessments to help you assess and build your employees’ knowledge.

To order the free USB package, email

Other health and safety resources

ACC has a range of general workplace health and safety tools and resources that are also suitable for metal manufacturing.

Health and Safety Improvement Cycle

The Health and Safety Improvement Cycle gives you a step-by-step guide on how to setup and support the comprehensive systems and procedures required for effective workplace health and safety. It’s a roadmap to reducing injury and illness in the workplace.

Incident Investigation Process

The Incident Investigation Process is an analysis tool to help identify the factors that contribute to injuries in your workplace and find the right prevention solutions.

Discomfort, pain and injury

Prevent and manage discomfort, pain and injury effectively, and your employees will be happier, healthier and more productive. Injury-related costs can go down, and you can more easily meet your legal requirement to protect your employees from harm.

ACC has a number of tools to help employers, employees and health and safety consultants manage discomfort, pain and injury. Visit HabitAtWork (external link) for more information.

Work Smart tips (external link)

A free online tool that lets you create and customise sheets of stretches, health and safety tips, workplace health and safety policies for an employee, a team or even your whole workplace.

Work injury cost calculator

Every time a worker suffers an injury, there is an impact on your business. You have to find a replacement, train them, manage workflows, fill in forms and it all adds up. Do you know the real impact of injuries on your financial bottom line? Use the ACC injury cost calculator to find out.

Noise-induced hearing loss

Exposure to excessive noise is one of the main causes of hearing loss, and many New Zealanders work in noisy environments. You can order these resources from the Publications section.

Other metal manufacturing industry resources

For information and helpful tips on health and safety in the metal manufacturing industry, have a look at the ACC resources available in our Publications section.

WorkSafe New Zealand (external link) has a range of industry specific health and safety guidelines, tools and resources to help workplaces improve their health and safety performance.

Visit the Metal Press newsletter archive.

Injuries are preventable and everybody has a role to play to ensure they go home injury free each day.

Updated: 26 August 2015

Reviewed: 17 February 2014