Safety Stars

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The winners of the 2022 Hunter Safety Awards were announced at the award ceremony on Thursday 12 May at the Newcastle Exhibition and Convention Centre (NEX), the first in person event hosted since 2019.

Hunter Safety Awards Founder, Sarah-Jane Dunford said it was a pleasure to be back in the room with so many likeminded individuals and businesses.

“This event had been a long time coming, and we’re so glad we were able to hold it in person once again,” Sarah-Jane said. “The safety conscious individuals and businesses in the Hunter Region deserved to be recognised and we’re grateful the event went off without a hitch.”

Now in its sixth year, the Awards recognised businesses across 13 different categories of health and safety, with a further exploration of mental health being evident across submitted entries following the COVID 19 pandemic.

Major winners included Fenech Demolition who walked away with the prestigious ‘Gold’ Safety Helmet in the WHS Business of the Year category as well as Best WHS Management System for Small to Medium Enterprises.

Sarah-Jane said the judges were highly impressed, not only with Fenech Demolition’s six-step management system, but their overall approach to safety management in their business.

“Fenech Demolition faces some extremely hazardous risks in their line of work and developed a proactive approach to safety management in their industry,” Sarah-Jane said.

“Their values around open communication for reporting on hazards, bi-weekly meetings with their team and training sessions were an excellent example of how all businesses, no matter the size, should approach safety.”

Manager of Fenech Demolition, Julian Fenech was speechless over their two award wins.

“We weren’t expecting any win tonight, we just thought we were coming to an awards night to enjoy some great entertainment with our team and our family,” Julian said.

“I am honestly lost for words and couldn’t make a speech when we won because I was so shocked and excited.

“We’ve taken safety to another level, not just on the job site, but in our workplace where it all begins. At the end of the day everybody wants to go home to their families, and as a family-owned business that’s what we’re all about.”

Asset Training was awarded Best WHS Training Program for their development of Australia’s first online Drain Cleaning System Refresher course.

Following COVID-19 restrictions, Asset Training saw the need for course content that allowed students to demonstrate the required skills while on the job, through video recordings for practical assessments and submitting live workplace documents evidencing their ability to provide accurate safety documentation in an actual working situation.

Asset Training also came away as a dual winner on the night, with team member Sam Herd winning Young WHS Leader of the Year for his ongoing commitment and dedication to his role as a Trainer and Assessor.

“My team and company have been the driving force behind my dedication to safety and I wouldn’t have won this without them,” Sam said.

“It has even more meaning knowing our company won for their hard work too, and I’m excited to celebrate alongside them.”

The judges were impressed by the dedication and innovation every finalist and winner showed in their entries.


WHS Business of the Year
Fenech Demolition
Best Health and Wellbeing Program (Large Organisation)
Best Health and Wellbeing Program (SME)
Murray Consulting
Best WHS Improvement (Large Organisation)
Chandler Macleod
Best WHS Improvement (SME)
Warner Company
Best WHS Management System (Large Organisation)
CMA Contracting
Best WHS Management System (SME)
Fenech Demolition
Most Innovative WHS Idea (Large Organisation)
Most Innovative WHS Idea (SME)
WHS Student of the Year
Louise Conn (Hunter Ready Made Concrete)
WHS Champion of the Year
Monica Toews Brown (Red Insight)
Young WHS Leader of the Year
Sam Herd (Aqua Assets)
Best WHS Training Program
Asset Training

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