HOWARD Sharp has Australia’s most dangerous job.
That’s according to a new survey that puts commercial fishing at the top of the 10 most dangerous Australian jobs.
The Port Fairy cray fisherman says it’s not surprising that his profession comes in ahead of mining, truck drivers and the defence force.
“It’s one of those jobs where things can go wrong unexpectedly,” he said.
“Everything can be going perfectly but then something changes and it can turn to catastrophe. You’ve got to have so much respect for the sea and for weather conditions.
“You need to be switched on all the time. You can’t have a lapse in concentration and you have to make sure your boat is in tip-top condition.”
The lifeinsurancefinder.com.au survey says commercial fishing is considered 17 times more dangerous than mining because fishermen and women work kilometres away from land and often face icy wind, violent storms and heavy rain during the course of their shift.
Mining came in as the second most dangerous job, truck drivers were third, with construction workers fourth. The top 10 was rounded out by tree loppers, farmers, defence force employees, firefighters, pilots and garbage collectors.
Mr Sharp said while cray fishing wasn’t normally as dangerous as working on a trawler, it still had it’s moment.
“We work a bit closer into shore, so you have the swell to contend with,” he said.
“If you go in to rescue a pot in heavy swell, you run the risk of getting a rope caught around the propeller and then getting dumped by a wave, which could mean you drown.
“No matter what type of fishing boat you work on though, there is always something to be cautious of.”
On a global scale, Alaskan crab fishing, shipbreaking and bus driving in Guatemala were found to be among the most hazardous jobs.