The company director jailed for recklessly endangering a roofer, who fell to his death, over-relied on the diligence of workers and skimped on safety controls, the Queensland Office of Industrial Relations has revealed.
A company director has been jailed for a year, while his company has been fined $1 million, in the latest of a series of cases that show the increasing trend for safety regulators to target individuals and push for harsh penalties, according to a WHS and employment relations lawyer.
Employers and safety professionals could be on the verge of having cheaper or even free access to Australian Standards incorporated into work health and safety laws and other legislation, with Standards Australia describing a recent judgment as an "exciting step towards delivering greater value and improving access" to the documents.
An employer's duty to provide a safe system of work extends to maintaining and enforcing such a system, including where an alternative system creates a foreseeable risk of injury of any severity, an appeals court has found in upholding an injured worker's $1.4 million award.
The growing evidence from animal studies that nanomaterials can be harmful to health should compel employers to eliminate or reduce exposure to the tiny particles through the hierarchy of controls - immediately, according to special guidance from the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
An employer has committed to spending more than $500,000 on promoting truck safety and developing mental health tools, after a contractor suffered fatal head injuries cleaning a vehicle outside the designated area.