There are a number of Standards that are applicable for the Australian workplace with respect to working at height and confined spaces. Australian Standards give us a set of guidelines, specifications and procedures for the purpose of ensuring products, services and systems are safe, consistent and reliable. They are not legally enforceable, unless referenced by Legislation.
The creation of the relevant Standards is overseen by Standards Australia through a committee process, with a process to periodically review the documents for changing industry developments.
There are a number of International Standards (ISO Standards) that have also been recently adopted by Australian Standards. The ISO is an International Standards body that has a number of representatives from national Standards organisations, and it is currently the world’s largest developer of voluntary international standards.
Standards are only available for purchase from Standards Australia. See www.standards.org.au for more information.
The key Standards that apply include:
Some of the Standards listed are in the process of review by Standards Australia. The WAHA actively participates in the SF015 Committee process to create and review these Standards.
Other Standards that may be encountered include European Standards (EN Standards). These are developed by the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) which is a non-profit Standards organisation officially recognised by the European Union. Equipment manufactured to these standards are widely recognised as providing an appropriate standard that is maintained across the industry irrespective of geographical location.
American Standards (ANSI Standards) are also often referenced which include the development of Standards with ASSE International, the International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
WAHA members can participate in the Standards process through Working Committees which provide direct industry review and commentary prior to publication. Alternatively, access to information as to the progress of changes and updates to Standards can be accessed through the member meeting forums.