Gerringong business Lacket has won a National Safety Council of Australia award for the safety product it invented to secure extension ladders for safe use. Kiama Downs paramedic David Kay founded the company with engineer friend Daniel Seidel friend after witnessing the devastating effects of wobbly extension ladders.
The prototype of the Lacket won the SafeWork NSW award for the best solution for a small business safety issue in 2017. It sits underneath the fascia and fits into place in a similar way a chair can be jammed under a door handle. There is no physical way for the ladder to fall backwards or sideways.
Mr Kay said the product had just gone on the market when it won the SafeWork NSW award. "We had a factory at Unanderra and have since moved manufacturing to Gerringong The market has opened up with the electrical and commercial industries. And we are in discussions at the moment about putting it into Bunnings. That is something that might happen in the future".
The category Lacket won its National Safety Council of Australia award for was Best Solution For a WH&S Risk - Small Organisation.
Prior to being a paramedic Mr Kay worked in the plumbing industry where he also saw the lack of options plumbers had when it came to meeting the safe work regulations.
"The as a paramedic I was continually seeing accidents involving extensions ladders not being secured them properly," he said.
"Our National Safety Council of Australia award was for a new product on the market that creates a solution for a specific problem where there is a gap in the market".
"It is awesome to be recognised. You spend so much time developing a product and putting out there but you are not sure if people are taking it on or taking notice of it. But then when you get an award like this it brings home that the governing bodies appreciate what you are actually doing and that your efforts are worth it".
Mr Kay said positive feedback from customers has also spurred Lacket on to producing other attachments that are now being used in industries where they haven't had solutions before.
National Safety Awards of Excellence are Australia's are the only national and independent awards program and celebrate organisations and people who contribute to the health, safety and well-being of their employees and show continuous improvement in their business performance.