From "OHS Alert" 14/12/10
NSW makes workplace safety switches mandatory
Electrical safety switches will be mandatory in all NSW workplaces under
new regulations announced by State Finance Minister Michael Daley.
Daley said employers that use "higher risk" moveable electrical equipment
(including hand-held power tools, welders, portable lighting and hair
dryers) or equipment in higher risk environments (outdoor areas,
construction sites and factories) must ensure either fixed or portable
safety switches are in place by the end of next year.
All other workplaces are required to install safety switches - where
reasonably practicable - by December 2014.
Small businesses that consult a WorkCover business advisory officer or
attend a workshop will be entitled to rebates of up to $500 to cover
NSW will now be one of five jurisdictions (along with the Northern
Territory, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia) to have such
provisions in place. Current NSW regulations only mandate safety switches
for some construction and building sites.
"These devices have been a major factor in the continuing reduction of
electrocutions in Australia," Daley said. "I am determined that we take all
reasonable steps to prevent unnecessary death and injury at work. Safety
switches are one part of the answer."