NSW has jumped the gun on the other harmonised jurisdictions by introducing a WHS Amendment Bill that increases fines through a penalty unit system, prohibits insurance against safety fines and facilitates work-related manslaughter prosecutions.
A PCBU charged over a fatality has been acquitted, with a court finding it had successfully eliminated the relevant risks through administrative controls for "many years", and could not have foreseen that the killed worker would operate mobile plant in a hazardous no-go area.
The Fair Work Commission has refused to reopen a worker's anti-bullying application, despite a WHS regulator issuing improvement notices to her employer and advising the parties to seek clarity from the FWC to avoid further conflict.
A tribunal has rejected a worker's claim that he suffered paranoia and incapacitating post-traumatic stress disorder from accessing databases that made him vulnerable to "dangerous" criminals identifying him.
A principal contractor and a subcontractor have been fined a total of nearly $300,000 after a worker was seriously injured, with a court ruling the former wasn't entitled to rely on the latter to implement agreed safety measures.
Duty holders will switch from "tick the box" compliance to risk-based safety management systems and have easy access to imported technologies that improve safety, under draft Productivity Commission recommendations for the transport sector.
An employer has been fined $650,000 after a worker died in a 12-metre fall from a platform that was completely unsuitable for purpose, making the fall almost inevitable. Meanwhile, a head contractor has entered a $175,000 safety undertaking after a worker was impaled on an obviously hazardous bar.
The majority of Australia's WHS ministers have agreed to maintain the mandatory status of the workplace exposure standards and change the name of the system to make it clear that exposure limits for hazardous chemicals can't be exceeded.
Workplace bullying and harassment is the number one cause of psychological injury claims and employers should consider which "carrots" and "sticks" in their policies are influencing behaviour, according to an icare senior manager.