WA Laws not Hamonised by January 1 Deadline

Now that South Australia has passed the new WHS laws to take effect in the state from January 1 2013, Western Australia and Victoria are the only two states that are still operating under the old scheme.

The WA state government has stated that it will not pass the new laws by the January deadline.

A spokesperson for the Commerce Minister, Simon O’Brien said that WA is waiting for additional information from the Federal Government regarding regulations that are set to affect the mining industry, which will potentially stall the laws in WA till 2014.

Sam Whitton from Herbert Smiths Freehills Lawyers has said that the onus will be on board members with the new laws, this includes mining, to be concerned with safety to the level of hard hats and steel capped boots.

He said that businesses will also be compelled to consider non traditional areas of safety reporting and prevention.

Part of the reason that WA is said to be reluctant to agree to the national system is understanding the impact that the laws will have on mining such as increased penalties and the right of entry for unions.

Initially it was thought that the mining industry would be covered under separate amendments to the State Mining Act which are due by 2014.

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