Not Such an Excellent Decision

The contractor in the Arkwood matter has been fined a paltry $15 k for failing to ensure (and in fact proactively encouraging) an unqualified truck driver to operate a crane that struck overhead powerlines and seriously injured two workers. In addition, the contractor failed to comply with his own safe work method statement which emphasised … Read more

An Excellent Decision

In the NSW District Court, a contractor has been found guilty and fined $600K for injuries sustained when labour hire workers were lifted to height in an excavator bucket. Apex Building Systems (Principal Contractor) hired an independent contractor, Greater Civil, to undertake demolition work. Labour hire workers to assist Greater Civil were supplied by Astute … Read more

Getting The Right Advice!

See my latest podcast with Lawyers Weekly talking about the importance of getting the right advice about safety, and particularly contractor safety management. It was a lot of fun. Thanks for the opportunity.

Kozarov – A Bit of A No Brainer

The High Court has confirmed that where a risk to health and safety is obvious and foreseeable an employer must take proactive steps to reduce that risk. Uh how is this news and why on earth was the case appealed by the employer (a State Government department) all the way to the High Court. It … Read more

Occupational Violence in Customer Service

I am pretty sure banks do not consider occupational violence risks when they set up their processes to deal with customers on the phone. Customer service officers bear the brunt of customers being put on hold for extended periods of time, then being redirected or even being told to hang up and call another number. … Read more

Alphabet Soup – The Murky Side of Safety

ust the sound of all the acronyms used in safety makes me need a lie down and a bex. JSA, SWMS, SOP, WI, AFARP, ALARP, HAZOP, ICAM…… Not only is the use of acronyms effective at shutting “non-safety” people out of safety, they are usually used so loosely and exchangeably that they lose all meaning. … Read more

Categorizing Contractors. There is a Better Way.

I usually find contractor management systems attempt to categorise contractors by ht level of risk they pose to the organizations hiring them. Whilst it can be helpful to flag contractors whom you may wish to have a higher degree of involvement with in terms of consulting with them about how they are going to manage … Read more

A Bit Chuffed…

For 5 weeks I will be delivering a lecture series on contractor safety management at Federation Uni in Ballarat Victoria. The course starts on 26 July 2022 and I am really excited to be a part of bringing the safety profession along in this largely misunderstood area of law and safety practice. Thanks for the … Read more

Not Pulling Any Punches

Here are some pithy comments from a very well-respected legal colleague on a position articulated by someone who should know better: “It is entirely illogical (if not plainly idiotic) to suggest that on one hand a PCBU should be able to rely on the expertise of a contractor in relation to work which the PCBU … Read more

Love to See You at the WHS Show 2022

On 25-26 May 2022, the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre will host Australia’s biggest and brightest minds in health and safety for the Workplace Health & Safety Show 2022 (that includes me!). My session titled “Baiada 10 Years On” will look at what has changed in the contractor safety management space since this landmark case. … Read more