In the Media

JESI software offers mining a COVID Safe commute plan
New software will enable mining workers to digitally log their journeys to and from any geographic location, improving the communication and tracking of employees in the industry (10 September 2021). More...

Lockdowns add to workplace mental health challenges
Allianz Australia insurer says workplace mental health claims, or psychological injuries, are on the rise, going up 5 per cent in the 2020/21 financial year from the previous corresponding period (06 September 2021). More...

Mine safety initiatives receive Federal funding support
Three mining safety projects have received funding from the Federal Government's Cooperative Research Centres Projects (CRC-P) initiative. The 11th round of the CRC-P awarded 22 projects with a share in $47 million in grants (06 September 2021). More...

Safety in offshore oil and gas industry again in spotlight
The Offshore Alliance has slammed the blatant lack of workplace safety in the WA offshore oil and gas industry after yet another serious accident, this time leading to a worker being badly burned by scalding steam (03 September 2021). More...

Charges laid for unsafe truss work
Melbourne Truss Pty Ltd has been charged with breaching section 26 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act for failing to provide a safe working environment. It's alleged the company could have taken reasonably practicable steps to reduce the risk to health and safety during the delivery of trusses (03 September 2021). More...

NSW government safeguarding against building site incidents
The NSW Government is taking a proactive step towards eliminating unsafe work on ladders, roofs and scaffold on building sites in a bid to better protect tradies and construction workers across the state. SafeWork NSW officers can now issue on-the-spot fines of up to $720 for individuals and $3,600 for businesses (03 September 2021). More...

Australian Human Rights Commission statement on passage of Respect@Work reforms
The Australian Human Rights Commission welcomes the passage of the Sex Discrimination and Fair Work (Respect at Work) Amendment Bill 2021. The Bill contains important reforms to address sexual harassment in Australian workplaces which were recommended by the Australian Human Rights Commission following its world-leading National Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in Australian Workplaces, Respect@Work. More...

Defence fined $1 million over live-fire fatality
The Department of Defence has been convicted and fined $1 million under federal work health and safety laws over the death of a soldier during a training exercise in the Northern Territory. The penalty is the largest recorded for the Commonwealth WHS jurisdiction (01 September 2021). More...

Quarry, stonemasonry companies face silica exposure charges
In Victoria, a quarry operator and a stonemasonry business are facing six charges each under the Occupational Health and Safety Act for alleged silica-related failings (31 August 2021). More...

Director and PCBUs charged with Industrial Manslaughter in separate incidents in Queensland
The independent Work Health and Safety Prosecutor, Mr Aaron Guilfoyle, has charged Western Meat Exporters Pty Ltd and its sole director, Campbell McPhee, with industrial manslaughter under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 in relation to an incident at Charleville in July 2019 (31 August 2021). More...

Pipecon pleads guilty to charge over trench collapse that killed Jack Brownlee, Charlie Howkins
A civil construction company has pleaded guilty in the Victorian County Court to a workplace breach laid over the deaths of two Ballarat workers after a trench collapse. The company initially pleaded not guilty, indicating it would argue there were adequate supervision and systems of work in place (30 August 2021). More...

Published – articles, papers, reports

Safe Work Australia fatality statistics
As at 2 September, 81 Australian workers were killed at work in 2021. The numbers and industries may vary from one report to the next, as Safe Work receives more detailed information (to check for updates and more details on fatalities since 2003, go to the Safe Work Australia Work-related fatalities webpage).

In practice and courts

COMCARE Regulatory update – removal of a plant registration condition
31 August 2021 – In accordance with regulation 283 of the Work Health and Safety Regulations 2011, Comcare has considered the submissions received and has decided to cease the condition to submit annual plant maintenance notifications to Comcare from 1 October 2021.
Comcare has developed a factsheet about the condition removal with further details around plant risk factors, legal requirements, reasons for the change and next steps. More...

Safe Work Australia: National Safe Work Month 2021 – theme and campaign kit released
Safe Work Australia has released the theme and campaign kit for National Safe Work Month 2021 ahead of the official campaign launch on 1 October. More...

Safe Work Australia news
Agricultural workers at risk of lung disease (06 September 2021)
Eliminate or manage hazardous air in manufacturing (30 August 2021)

FSC: Updated: Fact sheet – verification of competency – mobile plant
The Federal Safety Commissioner has published an updated fact sheet on verifying the Competency of mobile plant operators. The updated fact sheet responds to industry feedback and seeks to clarify the requirements set out in the previous fact sheet and is available on the useful documents and downloads page (01 September 2021). More...

NSW

Incidents, alerts & investigations
2 September 2021 – Safety Bulletin SB21-05 – Fire risk of battery units for underground battery electric vehicles. More...

Mine Safety News
02/09/2021 – Mine Safety News

Queensland

WorkSafe Qld incident alerts
Worker seriously injured in fall from roof 8 September 2021
Worker killed by falling branch while felling trees 7 September 2021

Victoria

WorkSafe Victoria safety alert: Safety when loading and unloading skip bins
WorkSafe is issuing an alert about the hazards and risks associated with lifting waste container skip loaders (skip bins) on and off trucks (08 September 2021). More...

Cases

Prosecution Result Summaries and Enforceable Undertakings
Information about the most recent prosecution and Enforceable Undertaking outcomes

Lisa Watt
Dandenong Magistrates' Court- Workplace Injury Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2013
Section 581 Outcome 02 September 2021

Legislation

Victoria

No 112 Occupational Health and Safety Amendment (Major Hazard Facilities) Regulations 2021 31/08/2021

Victorian legislation can be accessed here.

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.