The Australian Defence Force's failure to implement a safety rule recommended after a 2009 fatality - for which it was handed a near-maximum work health and safety fine - contributed to the death of an inexperienced soldier in a live firing exercise, an inquest has found.
In a case prompting renewed calls for industrial manslaughter laws, a PCBU that failed to comply with its own safety management manual or apply available controls has been convicted over a death, while another employer has been fined over a painter's fatal fall.
A coroner has condemned an employer's actions in demoting a worker struggling with mental illness, instead of seeking to accommodate her condition as required by its procedures and anti-discrimination laws, in an inquest into the worker's suicide.
The High Court will determine whether the harmonised WHS laws extend to all workplaces and operate in conjunction with other legislation that previously "covered the field", after granting a regulator special leave to appeal against the quashing of fatality-related charges.
A coronial inquest into a worker's death has pointed to the differing expectations of safety regulators, and the fact that one's policy on "generational" change could be exposing the current generation of workers to "risks that legally should not exist".
A coronial inquest has found that WHS offences "may have been committed" in connection with the death of a worker in a 66-metre fall, after rejecting a regulator's finding that such workers weren't required to hold high-risk work licences.
An appeals court has quashed WHS charges laid against a ballooning company after a fatal ground incident, finding Commonwealth aviation laws were intended to cover the circumstances that led to the death, and not intended to operate in conjunction with WHS legislation.