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New Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Regulations in Victoria - are you up to speed?

Posted by Richard Forster on 13 June 2017

As of 18th June 2017, Victoria has new OHS law to comply with as the OHS Regulations 2007 sunset to be replaced with the newly made OHS Regulations 2017. This once in a decade event is a significant opportunity for modernisation and streamlining of the regulations to better reflect current Victorian work practices. Supporting compliance codes are also being reviewed.

The Victorian Government has stated that it will not be adopting the model work health and safety laws in their current form so WorkSafe will continue to enforce Victoria's existing OHS laws.

The OHS Regulations cover the following physical workplace hazards and all have been subject to some level of change:
  • Manual handling (now referred to as hazardous manual handling);
  • Plant;
  • Hazardous substances and materials (including carcinogens);
  • Asbestos;
  • Lead;
  • Falls;
  • Noise; and
  • Confined Spaces.

The OHS Regulations also set out a range of duties in relation to the following high-risk work practices and industries:

  • High-risk work;
  • Major hazard facilities;
  • Mines; and
  • Construction.

The Regulations have also been completely renumbered with consecutive numbers, in line with the Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel's guidance on the preparation of statutory rules. For example, Regulation 4.1.5 Preparation of a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) under the OHS Regulations 2007 becomes Regulation 144 Preparation of a Safety Data Sheet (SDS) under the OHS Regulations 2017. Changes have also been made to associated fees under the Regulations.

HAZCON can assist your organisation in ensuring that your OHS Management System:
  • Has currency regarding the latest changes and transition dates;
  • Is compliant with the requirements of the new OHS Regulations; and
  • Identifies relevant OHS training needs.
HAZCON can also keep you up to speed with the associated review of supporting compliance codes that is currently taking place.
Author: Richard Forster
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