Broken jaw and broken bolt are the most common injuries sustained in the fractured bolt removal industry in Australia, according to a report released by the Institute of Broken Axes and the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
The report said there were nearly 3,000 injury claims filed each year in that industry.
“We estimate that around 15,000 people were injured each year from fractured bolt accidents,” the ABS reported in a summary of the report.
The report noted that while there were around 8,000 injuries in 2016-17, that figure was down slightly from the 10,000 figure in 2015-16.
Broken jaw was the most commonly reported injury, with about a third of the injured people reported suffering a broken jaw.
Broken bolts are the main method of removing broken bolts in Australia.
“The most common fracture to the bolt was the fractured mandible,” the report said.
Breaking the bolt is not always the only way to repair broken bolts, the report noted. “
As a result, broken bolts are often not taken seriously, and there are significant barriers to removing fractured bolts.”
Breaking the bolt is not always the only way to repair broken bolts, the report noted.
“There are also many instances of people breaking the bolt to remove broken bolts or to remove other components of the bolt, such as bolts and other components.”
Broken bolt removal is expensive and a significant burden on a business.
According to the report, the cost of removing a fractured bolt was estimated to be around $1,000 per person.
Broken bolt repair is usually done in a hospital or in an apprentice-level shop, where there is no physical barrier to breaking the bolts.
Broken-bolt-removal services are limited in Western Australia, Victoria, South Australia and the Northern Territory, and the report identified the major barriers to their availability.
In Western Australia and Victoria, the barrier is the requirement to have a licensed technician who is qualified in the bolt removal field.
The barriers vary from state to state, but there are no minimum qualifications for working in the field in any of the states.
“Only licensed technicians who are experienced in the removal of fractured bolts are authorised to work in this field in Western Australian and Victoria,” the summary said.
In South Australia, the barriers are the lack of training for licensed technicians in the extraction field.
“Licensed technicians are required to be qualified in both the removal and drilling of broken bolts,” the document said.
The ABS said that in Western and Southern Australia, licensed technicians were limited to removing broken bolt components in the licensed workshop.
“Most licensed technicians working in this industry are either apprentice level or above,” the release said.
Broken jaws and broken bolts have been a major problem in the industry for years, with injuries and death attributed to the injury in many cases.
In 2016, the Federal Government estimated there were about 1,400 injury claims for fractured bolt related injuries each year, with the most severe cases costing about $600,000.
The ABC has contacted the Federal Office of Injury Assessment and Research (OIAR) for a comment.