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FOLS – a new way to stay safe and up to date in the forestry industry

January 14th, 2016

If a tree is felled in the forest without proper accreditation, will anyone find out?

The answer, of course, is yes. And that person could get into serious trouble.

Be it fines or a date in court, there are many ways you can be punished for chopping without proper qualifications, and it’s just not worth it – for both employees and employers.

That’s where the FOLS card comes in.

Although the forest industry has used various forms of licensing throughout Australia in recent years, FOLS is the first national system for the certification of safe and effective forest operations in Australia.

The online system, run by ForestWorks, keeps a record of operators who are qualified to do their job safely, plus a list of teachers and assessors qualified to provide the necessary training.

As a nationwide system, FOLS is streamlined and efficient.

FOLS cards are particularly useful in the case of an accident occurring in a workplace. During an investigation, employers can easily present their cards, which summarise their training and prove their up-to-date qualifications. And for assessors and Registered Training Organisations (RTO), FOLS is a great way to advertise services.

FOLS is a win-win for employees, employers and assessors. In tree-falling, considered a high-risk industry, FOLS reduces risk of injuries, ensures accreditations stay up to date and allows the industry to listen to feedback and make improvements.

Applying for a FOLS card is easy.

You can apply online or print out the application form and forward with evidence of attainment provided by an industry recognised RTO or a ForestWorks Accredited Assessor. A new FOLS card costs $150 for three years, while trainee FOLS cards are $30 for six moths.

To find out more about FOLS and how it could benefit your workplace, go to the ForestWorks website and have a look at some frequently asked questions.


This publication was issued by First Super Pty Ltd (ABN 42 053 498 472, AFSL 223988), as Trustee of the First Super superannuation fund (ABN 56 286 625 181). It does not consider your personal circumstances and may not be relied on as investment advice. Content was accurate at the date of issue, but may subsequently change.