The functions of elected health and safety representatives do not include an express power to attend compulsory examinations conducted by regulatory inspectors and question attendees, a superior court has ruled in a fatality case.
> NSW tweaks WHS Codes, investigates deaths, releases RTW paper; > Work operations suspended, as safety laws amended for Qld DV victims; and > Strategies for tackling musculoskeletal disorders released in WA.
An employer that largely ignored the reasonably practicable and inexpensive control measures identified in 10 improvement notices has been convicted and fined $125,000, while two regulators have issued fatality alerts outlining height and post-bushfire safety measures.
Workplaces continue to react to musculoskeletal injuries rather than implementing primary prevention interventions, inhibiting the reduction of work-related musculoskeletal disorders, according to WorkSafe WA's human factors and ergonomics principal scientific officer.
Employers can prevent the "drift" into complacency and safety failures, which often follows a period of success, by applying the principles of "high reliability organisational theory" and seeking out "near-miss signals", according to one of three major reports on fatalities and safety laws in Queensland. It also recommends an alternative metric to the notoriously misleading LTIFR.
An engineering company and its director breached WHS laws in failing to create a computer model to predict the risk of an unplanned structural collapse, exposing at least two workers to the risk of death or serious injury, a court has ruled.
In a long-running and complicated bullying case, the Fair Work Commission has agreed to expand the stop-bullying orders already in place against a company director, including by limiting his involvement with a worker's return-to-work process, after finding more instances of bullying had occurred.