Australia: Work Health & Safety - Whats News - 17 January 2017

Last Updated: 22 January 2017
Article by Charles Power, Stephen Trew and Michael Selinger

Most Read Contributor in Australia, September 2018

In the media

AMSA: Interim carriage requirements for shipping liquid hydrogen
Australia and Japan signed a memorandum at the headquarters of the AMSA which will allow liquid hydrogen to be shipped in bulk for the first time. Bulk gas cargoes are carried under the International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships Carrying Liquefied Gases in Bulk (IGC Code) which is a mandatory code under the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) convention(11 January 2017). More...

Metro charged by safety authority over death of teenager on Melbourne platform
Metro Trains has been charged by Victoria's transport safety authority for breaching its safety obligations over the death of a teenager who fell from a platform after his friends tried to hold a train's doors open in 2014 (10 January 2017). More...

Workplaces urged to do more after horror 2016
Victorian workplaces must do more in 2017 to prioritise safety following a horror year in which 26 people lost their lives at work (08 January 2017). More...

Nickel company fined $40k after tank rupture
First Quantum Minerals (FQM) Australia Nickel has received a $40,000 fine after a ruptured tank spilled around two million litres of sulphuric acid slurry at the company's Ravensthorpe Nickel Operation in 2014 (05 January 2017). More...

No test of operator business skills says NHVR
Truck operator licensing in Australia will focus on safety, with the national regulator telling ATN it is ruling out a test on business ability. Setting the Agenda - Strategies for a Safer, Productive and more Compliant Heavy Vehicle Industry 2016-2020 says under the heading "Safety Standards" that the NHVR will: "Develop appropriate standards for entry and continued operation in the heavy vehicle industry" (21 December 2016).

NTC proposes hydrogen, electric vehicle identifiers
The National Transport Commission (NTC) has invited industry parties to share their thoughts on the latest proposed amendments to the light and heavy vehicle standards Submissions on the amendments can be made until 4pm Friday, February 3, 2017 (19 December 2016).

National logistics company fined $200,000 for cyclist death
A Brisbane-based logistics company, with a fleet of 130 vehicles nationwide, has been fined $200,000 after a cyclist was killed in Carindale in 2013 by an unsecured stabiliser arm on one of its trucks (16 December 2016). More...

Shipping company fined a record $1 million over stevedore's death
Shipping operator Toll Transport Pty Ltd was today convicted and fined a record $1 million over the death of an employee who was crushed to death while helping load the Tasmanian Achiever at Webb Dock in 2014 (14 December 2016). More...

Safe Work outlines new hazardous chemical labelling requirements
Chemicals manufactured or imported before 1 January 2017 will be allowed to be supplied without having to meet Work Health and Safety Regulations' labelling requirements, according to Safe Work Australia (14 December 2016). More...

Published – articles, papers, reports

Safe Work Australia Fatality statistics
As at 5 January, 5 Australian workers have been killed at work in 2017.
The numbers and industries may vary as Safe Work receives more detailed information (to check for updates, go to the Safe Work Australia Work-related fatalities page).

NHVR Publications
Industry update 35: 22 December 2016 - 2016 a year in review.

CASA: All the news in safety
Keep up to date with aviation safety into 2017 with the CASA Briefing e-newsletter (19 December 2016). More...

In practice and courts

Comcare: Work Health and Safety (Labelling Hazardous Chemicals) Exemption 2016
The Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) was adopted in Australia under the model work health and safety laws in 2012 with a five year transition period. This transition expires in the federal jurisdiction on 31 December 2016. More...

IAEA Draft for Member State Comment
IAEA draft for review: DS493 - Format and Content of the Package Design Safety Report (PDSR) for the Transport of Radioactive Material. Closing date for comments is 11 March 2017. More...

NTC Australia: proposed identification labels for electric and hydrogen powered vehicles
Interested parties have been invited to make submissions on amendments to the light and heavy vehicle standards, which include new ways to identify hydrogen and electric powered vehicles (19 December 2016). More...

NTC New rail safety workers standard released
The National Transport Commission (NTC) today released the revised National Standard for Health Assessment of Rail Safety Workers, which will come into effect on 1 February 2017. More...

NTC: Edition 7.5 of the Australian Dangerous Goods
Visit the NTC website to view all of the changes outlined in Edition 7.5 of the Australian Dangerous Goods, before it takes effect on 1 March 2017.

Dangerous Goods Operations conference 2017
The Marcus Evans Dangerous Goods Operations (DGO) conference will take place in Melbourne on 16 – 17 March 2017, exploring the best safety management and DGO practices across a range of industries. More...

Safe Work Australia: Labelling requirements for hazardous chemicals in the supply chain
Chemicals manufactured or imported before 1 January 2017 can continue to be supplied without needing to meet the labelling requirements of the model Work Health and Safety Regulations. From 1 January next year, hazardous chemicals may only be supplied to other workplaces without GHS labelling if they were manufactured or imported on or before 31 December 2016, and were correctly labelled at that time. More...
Note: Each jurisdiction will be implementing this approach individually within their work health and safety laws. To understand how this approach will be applied in your jurisdiction, visit Safe Work Australia website for more information.

Senate Inquiry Update
Non-conforming building products
Status: Accepting Submissions; Date Referred: 11 October 2016; Submissions Closed: 01 December 2016; Reporting Date: 25 May 2017.

NSW: SafeWork NSW: Audiometric testing exemption
SafeWork NSW has issued a further one year exemption for the audiometric testing requirements of clause 58(2) of the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011.

This exemption is to ensure persons conducting a business or undertaking in NSW are provided with an appropriate time frame to prepare for the implementation of audiometric testing of workers who are frequently required to use personal protective equipment (PPE) in workplaces with noise levels that exceed the 'exposure standard for noise'.

The exemption was published on 9 December 2016 in the NSW Government Gazette number 111, page 3528 and is in force until 1 January 2018 (16 December 2016).

WorkSafe Queensland: eSAFE – 21 December 2016
Topics: Injury prevention and safety. In this edition: Minister Grace to meet with Cairns tourism reps on water safety; Highest safety standards essential for remote forest work; Supporting people affected by workplace fatality; Keep alert for work-related fatigue; Bedford rewarded for empowering staff to 'BSafe'; Why your workplace should tackle chronic disease and mental health head on; and much more. More...

Audiometric testing exemption
SafeWork NSW has issued a further one year exemption for the audiometric testing requirements of clause 58(2) of the Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011. The exemption is in force until 1 January 2018 (16 December 2016). More...

VIC: WorkSafe - Safe use of flammable refrigerants
This safety alert concerns Class 2.1 Flammable refrigerant gases and provides guidance to occupiers of premises on how to control the risk of fire and explosion from refrigeration and air-conditioning systems containing flammable refrigerants (11 January 2017). More...


Choi v Deloitte Touche Tomatsu [2016] NSWCATAD 304
Disability discrimination – illness in workplace – whether Applicant discriminated against on grounds of illness.

Vegco Pty Ltd 058 693 413 21/12/2016
Failure to provide information, instruction, training or supervision; Failure to provide a safe working environment. Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004; sections 21(1)&(2)(a); 21(1)&(2)(e); Bairnsdale Magistrates' Court.

Pacific Metal Group Pty Ltd 130 588 5 21/12/2016
Burns; Dangerous goods; Explosion; Exposure to chemicals; Failure to provide information, instruction, training or supervision; Non complied notice; Failure to provide a safe working environment. Dangerous Goods Act 1985; Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004; sections 17C(4); 21(1)&(2)(b); 21(1)&(2)(e); Sunshine Magistrates' Court.

Legislation - Commonwealth

Work Health and Safety (Labelling Hazardous Chemicals) Exemption 2016
22/12/2016 - This instrument grants an exemption from compliance with regulations 338, 341(1), 342(1) and 342(2) of the Work Health and Safety Regulations 2011 on the terms prescribed in the instrument, including to a hazardous chemical manufactured or imported prior to 1 January 2017 which is labelled in accordance with the National Code of Practice for Labelling of Workplace Substances [NOHSC: 2012 (1994)].

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.

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