Articles

Articles

The Myth of Non- Delegable WHS Duties

Whenever I post about contractor safety management someone inevitably pipes in that all WHS duties are non-delegable and therefore a Principal Contractor is liable for their contractors safety management. This is a myth (for a couple of reasons) and misunderstands the WHS Construction regulations in every jurisdiction. Under ALL WHS regulation the owner of a

Read More »

Managing Covid 101

WOSH Duty – identify operations that expose workers to Covid .e.g health care and implement reasonably practicable controls. 1 – eliminate exposure e.g. don’t take passengers in cab of tow truck/ work from home 2- isolate e.g. install physical barriers in a taxi 3 – substitute e.g. online/ telephone vs face to face 4 –

Read More »

Toll Data Breach – A Warning for Others

Under the banner of chain of responsibility employers in the transport industry are coercing transport operators and drivers to hand over personal and commercially sensitive information e.g. licenses, vehicle data and travel information, without any legal basis to do so. If you do this you are required to keep that information secure. If it leaks

Read More »

Industrial Manslaughter and Contractor Management

A topic grabbing everyone’s attention at the moment is industrial manslaughter and as always fear is in the air. Principal Contractors may think the best course of action is to take more control of contractors operations when the opposite is needed. The more control you take the more liability you have. Make sure your contractors

Read More »

Industrial Manslaughter – Is WOHS Legislation A Sword or Shield

Is the cacophony of legal noise around IM preventing us from seeing that the tools to manage it are already staring us in the face? Is the fear of IM going to drive regression into draconian, rule driven safety management practices? Should we abandon the movement away from progressive safety management? I am going to

Read More »

COR Vehicle Maintenance Obligations – Don’t Get Spooked

I have just read in an opinion piece with the following comment “Other CoR parties’ (other than drivers and transport operators) maintenance responsibilities are only likely to be triggered where they observe a vehicle defect. In this case, their responsibilities are likely to involve not permitting the use of the unsafe or defective heavy vehicle

Read More »

3rd Party Auditing – The Slippery Slope Into Liability

Engaging specialist 3rd party’s to assess and approve the safety arrangements of contractors is sadly quite common place these days (its a bit of a money spinner). Many of these companies offer services where they establish complex systems and criteria against which they asses contractor safety management. They collect contractor documentation, review it, go back

Read More »

SKM Recycling – The Real Story

On 24 October 2014 a worker lost his hand in an aluminium baler at SKM. I was the OHS Manager. How could this happen? The supplier was an expert engineer, they installed and commissioned the machine and trained operators. It was used exactly as intended and had all guarding in place. No incidents or near

Read More »

Fantastic! – COR Consultants and Lawyers – Lift Your Game!

The South Australian Road Transport Association (SARTA) has launched a broadside at an increasing incidence of overzealous clients in the supply chain, in what it deems an unintended consequence of last year’s chain of responsibility (COR) reforms. The growing COR compliance and consultancy space is leading to some clients becoming increasingly intrusive in the operations

Read More »

Labour Hire Licensing Act

Unintended Consequences Contractor Arrangements. The LHLA intends to protect workers from being exploited by Labour Hire Providers and hosts. Under the Act an LHP provides labour to perform work in and as part of a business or undertaking of the host. Work specifically includes (but is not limited to) cleaning, meat work and horticulture. Owner

Read More »

Defining Your Employment Relationships is Critical

A recent decision by the NSW Workers Compensation Commission in respect of a widows entitlement to workers compensation for her deceased husband has again considered the issue of when a worker will be considered a contractor vs an employee. However what is important about this case is not so much the indicia of when a

Read More »

When Is A Contractor a Contractor?

Here are key indices to consider when deciding if a person you employ is a contractor vs an employee. Thanks to Workplace Bulletin You do or can control and direct the way contracted work is performed. The worker can perform work for others. The worker has a separate place of work and can advertise their

Read More »

Issuing Permits to Work to Independent Contractors …. Are You Mad?!

Principle Contractors (lets call them PC group 1) often tell me (and I see when reviewing contractor management systems) that they issue independent contractors with permits to work to undertake work. To be clear permits to work under WOHS regulations are a risk management process to manage high risk tasks to confirm that prescribed risk

Read More »

Officers Duties – Is A Walk Around Really That Effective

Safety professionals and legal experts often exhort Officers to “do a walk around” to get familiar with safety hazards in their organisation and demonstrate due diligence. I have been present when these “walk arounds” occur. The workers shake hands with the boss, the boss diligently wears their PPE and asks interested questions about what is

Read More »

Workplace Heath and Safety Show 

The Workplace Health and Safety Show will be in Sydney soon (22 – 23 May 2019). I am presenting and will be covering clarification of liability for contractor safety and how to develop and structure a best practice contractor management process. See you there. Register at www.whsshow.com.au

Read More »

Linksafe

My relationship with LinkSafe means they provide the only software solution for contractor management that correctly reflects the legal requirements of the Heavy Vehicle National Law and will into the future as I closely monitor the reforms. Stop your the headaches and be totally reassured that you have both the IT and legal back up

Read More »

NHVR Consultation on HVNL Reforms- WHS Input Imperative

It is great to see the NHVR consulting with the transport industry on the proposed HVNL reforms but where is the WHS input, Safe Work Australia, Safety Institute of Australia and state regulators. Input from those who have worked under the WHS legal regime which is predicated on reasonable practicability is vital to get this

Read More »

COR Webinar- Get the Good Oil

I am running another webinar to help combat the ongoing misinformation around the National Heavy Vehicle Law and Chain of Responsibility. Please register if you really want to understand in the simplest terms how it all works. I will also be discussing the proposed overhaul of the HVNL to align it with the legal principles

Read More »

Tragic Crash will put COR Changes Under the Spotlight

The truck related crash on the Murray Valley Highway over the weekend which devastated a family, will no doubt see the changes to the National Heavy Vehicle Law (NHVL), which came into effect on 1 October 2018, put to the test. As a result of those changes, all parties in the chain of responsibility need

Read More »