12 November 2018
ISO 45001 Published as an AS/NZ Standard
After the much anticipated ISO 45001 was published in March, Standards Australia begun the process of adapting the Standard for local use in July. At the time, some stakeholders had raised concerns that certain provisions within ISO 45001 were not compatible with existing Australian legislation
Standards Australia CEO Dr Bronwyn Evans said the publication of this Standard would bring a systems-based approach to workplace health and safety across every industry in Australia.
“Australian experts contributed heavily to ISO 45001, working with their international colleagues to deliver a standard outlining international best practice in the management of workplace safety. Ultimately, organisations of every size and in every industry have guidance available to achieve a minimum level of workplace health and safety thanks to the publication of this standard.”
“The support this document has received from industry is indicative of the effort Australian organisations have already put into improving safety in their workplaces, which has the potential to be a simple and more effective process thanks to this international standard,”
Standards Australia has previously stressed that AS/NZS 4801 will “remain current until such time as it’s determined by regulators and a broad range of stakeholders to be otherwise.”
It’s believed Australia will now phase out these existing safety standards, giving businesses a three-year transition period to move from AS/NZS 4801 to AS/NZS 45001.
Work is also under way to scope what additional guidance could be provided on AS/NZS ISO 45001 to support organisations and individuals adopting the standard.
The point to take from this is that AS/NZ 4801 really no longer applies, nor does OSHAS 18001 as both are replaced by the ISO standard. Why is this important? Three manin reasons:
1. This standard align NZ and AS with the remainder of the world regarding safety management systems. It puts us into the same playing space.
2. ISO have adopted a 'higher level 'structure' that has all ISO standards for management systems looking the same and easing alignment between them. This makes the adoption of ISO 45001 based on ISO 9001 significantly simpler and less complex and cheaper.
3. The ISO standard introduces for safety risk management the perspective of safety risk as an 'opportunity', as opposed to simply a threat. This provides the ability for companies to use safety management to obtain market advantage.
Number of workplace assessments conducted by WorkSafe from Nov 2016 to Nov 2017 – 14,456