International trends in productivity and safety - is New Zealand keeping pace?

Authors: Glen Murphy
Publication: New Zealand Journal of Forestry, Volume N.Z.J.For. 2014, Issue N.Z.J.For. 59(3) 2014, pp 14-20, Nov 2014
Publisher: New Zealand Institute of Forestry

Abstract: Understanding international trends in harvesting productivity and safety performance, and knowing how we compare with other timber-producing regions of the world, should assist with the global competitiveness of New Zealand’s forestry sector. International productivity and safety data was gathered using three methods: contacting industrial and academic harvesting experts from around the globe; web searches for statistical information; and through a limited review of published papers. Productivity was measured in terms of cubic metres per crew-day or man-day (a unit of one day’s work by one person). Safety was assessed in terms of fatalities per million cubic metres harvested. International trends show improvements in both harvesting productivity and safety performance over time. New Zealand is better than many, but not all, countries for both performance measures but there is room for improvement. The literature indicates that a focus on similar factors can lead to improvements in both performance measures and that productive operations are generally also the safest.
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