QLD passes new laws to protect resources worker safety

The new laws change legislation for safety and health in QLD’s mines, quarries, petroleum, gas and explosives industries.
The new laws change legislation for safety and health in QLD’s mines, quarries, petroleum, gas and explosives industries.

Queensland Parliament has passed new laws to protect the health and safety of workers in Queensland’s mining industry.

The newly passed Resources Safety and Health Legislation Amendment Bill addresses serious risks on mine sites and includes reforms of critical controls and the introduction of enforceable undertakings.

Queensland Resources and Critical Minerals Minister Scott Stewart says resources workers’ safety is his primary focus.

“The most important thing to come out of out of any workplace at the end of each shift is its workers, and that is why safety is my number one priority,” he said.

“Our goal for these reforms was to improve the resource sector’s safety and health performance, and to reduce the number of fatalities and serious accidents.”

Under this legislation, Queensland mine and quarry sites will now be required to include critical controls in their safety and health management systems. Prior to this legislation, critical controls have been voluntarily applied across the resources industry.

The introduction of enforceable undertakings provides an alternative to prosecution that allows regulators to accept an undertaking from individuals and companies that have breached safety and health legislation barring matters involving workplace deaths.

Petroleum and gas inspectors will now be able to compel relevant people to give information or answer questions, following a recommendation from the coroner after the tragic death of Gareth Dodunski at a Queensland mine.

“After the explosion at the Grosvenor mine in 2020, the Queensland Coal Mining Board of Inquiry was established and made recommendations to industry, unions, Resources Safety and Health Queensland and other stakeholders,” Minister Stewart said.

“This has been a monumental effort and I want to thank everyone who contributed to these reforms, in particular the parents of Gareth Dodunski, Michelle and Phil, who bravely recounted the devastating loss of their son during the Committee hearings.”

These new laws implement the final recommendations from the Queensland Coal Mining Board of Inquiry.