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The effect of first aid training on Australian construction workers' occupational health and safety knowledge and motivation to avoid work-related injury or illness

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  • Helen Lingard

Abstract

A 24 week experiment was conducted to assess the effect of first aid training on small business construction industry participants' understanding of occupational health and safety (OHS) risks and risk controls and their motivation to avoid occupational injuries and illnesses. Participants' subjective understandings of OHS risks, options for risk control and motivation to control OHS risks were explored during in-depth interviews before and after receipt of first aid training. Interview data revealed that, other than raising awareness of the risk of infectious diseases, the first aid training did not increase participants' understandings of the nature or severity of specific OHS risks relevant to their work. First aid training appeared to reduce participants' 'self-other' bias, making them more aware that their experience of OHS risks was not beyond their control but that their own behaviour was also an important factor in the avoidance of occupational injury and illness. First aid training also appeared to reduce participants' willingness to accept prevailing levels of OHS risk. Participants' understandings of methods by which OHS risks can be controlled were unchanged by the first aid training and are limited to individual controls. First aid training did appear to increase participants' perception of the probability that they would suffer a work related injury or illness and they also expressed greater concern about taking risks at work after receiving first aid training. It therefore appears that first aid training enhanced participants' motivation to avoid occupational injuries and illnesses.

Suggested Citation

  • Helen Lingard, 2002. "The effect of first aid training on Australian construction workers' occupational health and safety knowledge and motivation to avoid work-related injury or illness," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(3), pages 263-273.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:conmgt:v:20:y:2002:i:3:p:263-273
    DOI: 10.1080/01446190110117617
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Helen Lingard, 2001. "The effect of first aid training on objective safety behaviour in Australian small business construction firms," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(6), pages 611-618.
    2. Helen Lingard & Noni Holmes, 2001. "Understandings of occupational health and safety risk control in small business construction firms: barriers to implementing technological controls," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 217-226.
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