NSW looks at major hazard facilities

Public comment on a draft regulation on the operation of major hazard facilities in NSW will close on 15 December 2006.

The new regulation will support the introduction of national standards for facilities such as:

  • oil refineries
  • chemical processing plants
  • liquefied petroleum gas depots
  • large chemical warehouses
  • explosive storage facilities.

The draft regulation is designed to make these potentially dangerous plants safer and more secure for anyone who works there and for families who live nearby,” NSW industrial relations minister John Della Bosca said.

“While major hazard facilities in NSW already comply with existing planning, environmental protection and occupational health and safety regulations, these updated laws give a focus to events with major consequences,” Mr Della Bosca said.

“The regulation will bring NSW into line with the National Standard for the Control of Major Hazard Facilities, which is being implemented by all states and territories as well as the Commonwealth.

“The new regulation follows extensive industry consultation and requires operators to minimise the risk of major accidents and near misses and to reduce the effects on the community of any major incident.”

Under the proposed regulation, all major hazard facilities must be registered with WorkCover NSW and have a safety management system that includes security and emergency plans,” he said.

Copies of the draft regulation and cost-recovery discussion paper, as well as instructions on how to submit comments, are available at www.workcover.nsw.gov.au.

Victoria’s Worksafe warning on guarding machinery

Victoria’s WorkSafe has issued a warning on guarding dangerous machinery, following the deaths in October and November of two men who were pulled into machines in separate incidents within days of each other.

The first involved a man who was pulled into the rollers of a drying machine in a commercial laundry while the second was caught in a farm tractor’s power take off (PTO).

The PTO of a tractor is a driveshaft that transmits torque from the tractor engine to other machinery. In this case, it was thought that the man was priming a pump when his clothes become entangled around the shaft, with terrible consequences — this is despite the fact that, according to Trevor Martin, director of WorkSafe’s manufacturing, logistics and agricultural division, “guarding for farm equipment is readily available, easy to fit, and inexpensive

Compensation Claims to outlive victims 3 Nov 2005

The changes would bring Tasmania into line with other Australian states, where the families of victims of dust-related diseases, such as asbestosis and mesothelioma, can sue even after the death of a loved one, according to Attorney General Judy Jackson.

“In the case of both asbestosis and mesothelioma for example, these diseases can progress very quickly after diagnosis