Upcoming asbestos management compliance audits for Queensland businesses

Starting from the 1st of August, 2024, official inspectors from Workplace Health and Safety Queensland will initiate audits on businesses operating within structures erected prior to 1990 or those potentially containing asbestos. Their objective is to ensure strict adherence to the stipulated asbestos guidelines. This regulatory assessment will continue through until the 31st of October, placing significant emphasis on requirements such as asbestos records and action planning.

If your company operates in a building dating back before 1990, it’s essential that you maintain an updated asbestos register and management plan. The provided workplace code of practice (PDF, 0.97MB) details pertinent information and guidance to achieve legal conformity. Inspectors will also address breaches of compliance with necessary enforcement actions, which could include issuing statutory notices or fines on-the-spot.

This statewide audit is an integral part of the National Strategic Plan for Asbestos Awareness and Management 2019-2023 (NSP) and the Statewide Strategic Plan for the Safe Management of Asbestos in Queensland 2022-2025. Both strategies collectively aim at eradicating asbestos-related diseases across Australia by curtailing exposure to dangerous asbestos fibres. This necessitates effective measures to manage asbestos utilisation and disposal, consequently addressing its harmful legacy on our homes, workplaces, and broader environment.

For comparison, last year’s campaign took place from September to November 2023 and resulted in 103 improvement notices and 10 infringement notifications within the 139 businesses evaluated.

Ensure that your business has executed the necessary steps for safeguarding employees and the community while adhering to asbestos regulations. Utilizing work safety products like Bluesafe SWMS (Safe Work Method Statements) or specific policies can considerably simplify these procedures, emphasising their importance in maintaining a safe working environment.

Discover more about asbestos registers and how management plans play a vital role in the workplace. Also read about the Statewide Strategic Plan for the Safe Management of Asbestos in Queensland 2022-2025. More information on Bluesafe WHS Management System can be found here, challenging you to strategise better in your commitment towards upholding safety standards.

Original article link: https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/news-and-events/news/2024/upcoming-asbestos-management-compliance-audits-for-queensland-businesses