Work Health and Safety

Australian Work Health & Safety law, or WHS, addresses both safe design and workplace (occupational) safety.  It imposes duties upon designers, manufacturers, importers, and suppliers of plant, structures, and substances.

Australian vs. UK Safety Law
This post, Blog: Australian vs. UK Safety Law compares the two approaches, …
Australian WHS Course
In this Australian WHS Course, we show you how to practically and …
How to Demonstrate SFARP
In this lesson, I will teach you how to demonstrate SFARP. To …
So Far As Is Reasonably Practicable
'So Far As Is Reasonably Practicable' is a phrase that gets used …
Due Diligence and Safety
In this article, I'm looking at Due Diligence and Safety in the …
Consultation, Cooperation & Coordination CoP
In this 30-minute session, we look at the Consultation, Cooperation & Coordination …
Risk Management Code of Practice
In this 40-minute session, we look at the Risk Management Code of …
Introduction to WHS Codes of Practice
In the 30-minute session, we introduce Australian WHS Codes of Practice (CoP). …
Lessons Learned from a Fatal Accident
Lessons Learned: in this 30-minute video, we learn lessons from an accident …
Guide to the WHS Act
This Guide to the WHS Act covers many topics of interest to …
Intro to Work Health and Safety
This short video Intro to Work Health and Safety looks at Australian …

The four-lesson discount bundle, including Safe Design, is available here at a Discount!

WHS Law in Practice

WHS legislation is powerful and elegant, and it yields a lot of useful content, whether you are in an Australian jurisdiction or not. It is based on the UK’s approach to health and safety at work, but it has incorporated lessons learned from four decades of experience there.

In 2011, Safe Work Australia developed the model work health and safety (WHS) laws to be implemented across Australia. To become legally binding the Commonwealth, states and territories must separately implement them as their own laws. Safe Work Australia is responsible for maintaining the model WHS laws, but we don’t regulate or enforce them.

Safe Work Australia

However, Australia’s federal system complicates the application of our laws. The Safety Artisan will attempt to cut through this complexity and explain the core concepts needed for practical success.

WHS Codes of Practice

Safe Work Australia notes that:

Model Codes of Practice are practical guides to achieving the standards of health and safety required under the model WHS Act and Regulations.

Safe Work Australia

They also go on to say:

An approved code of practice applies to anyone who has a duty of care in the circumstances described in the code. In most cases, following an approved code of practice would achieve compliance with the health and safety duties in a jurisdiction’s WHS Act and Regulations.

Like regulations, codes of practice deal with particular issues and do not cover all hazards or risks that may arise. Health and safety duties require you to consider all risks associated with work, not only those risks that regulations and codes of practice exist for.

While approved codes of practice are not law, they are admissible in court proceedings. Courts may regard an approved code of practice as evidence of what is known about a hazard, risk or control and may rely on the relevant code to determine what is reasonably practicable in the circumstances.

We ignore these words at our peril!

Head back to the Topics Page for more safety training.