Harmonisation of Work Health and Safety Legislation - Incident Notification
Part 3 of the Work Health Safety Act 2011 requires that as a 'persons conducting a business or undertaking' (PCBUs), you must notify the relevant Work Health Safety authority of fatalities, serious injuries and illnesses, and dangerous incidents that arise from the conduct of the business or undertaking; as soon as you become aware of the incident.
The requirements of Incident Notification outlined in the new Act has are similar to existing provisions in most Australian states.
The notification to must be by the fastest available means and can be made by phone or in writing (such as by fax, email or other electronic means). If the notification was by phone this must be followed up in writing within 48 hours if requested.
Preserving the Incident Site
The person with management or control of a workplace must preserve the incident site until an inspector attends the site, or directs otherwise. You may disturb the site to move a deceased person, assist an injured person, make the site safe, or assist with a police investigation.
What is a serious injury or illness? (Section 36)
A serious injury or illness includes:
- An injury or illness that requires immediate treatment as an 'in-patient in hospital' (An 'inpatient in hospital' is a person who has been admitted to hospital and requires at least one overnight stay.)
- Amputation of any part of the body
- Serious head, eye or burn injury
- Degloving or scalping
- Spinal injury
- Loss of bodily function
- Serious laceration
- Exposure to a substance, which requires medical treatment within 48 hours.
What is a dangerous incident?
A dangerous incident exposes someone to a serious risk to their health or safety, such as:
- The uncontrolled escape, spillage or leakage of a substance
- Uncontrolled implosion, explosion or fire
- Uncontrolled escape of gas, steam or pressurised substance
- Electric shock
- Falls from height of any plant, substance or the like
- Incident involving or damage to any plant (that requires authorisation in accordance with the WHS regulations)
- The collapse of a structure, or excavation including shoring
- An inrush of water, mud or gas
- The interruption of underground ventilation.
The 'Work Health and Safety Act' comes into effect January 1 2012.
Business Savvy Risk Management can assist you in developing or reviewing your current OHS documentation and provide the necessary resources to ensure conformance.
Contact us for more information and find out how Business Savvy can help your business:
Phone: (02) 9555 1708
Fax: (02) 9555 1692