OH&S Major Incidents - Australia

Informed advice on the full spectrum of OHS law

Major incidents occur unexpectedly and present a significant risk to companies across many sectors. Major corporates as well as energy, resources and industrial companies rely on our team to help them prevent or reduce the risk of an incident and to respond effectively if one occurs.

With significant increases in occupational health and safety (OHS) regulation in Australia, there is greater focus than ever on compliance, prevention, risk management and incident management processes. We advise on the full spectrum of OHS laws and incident management, including:

  • Managing legal risks following safety incidents, including taking witness statements, media strategy and liaising with safety regulators
  • Preparing risk management procedures and policies for corporate clients
  • Responding to safety concerns raised by safety investigators and union representatives
  • Acting for clients in prosecutions resulting from a safety incident.

Through robust prevention services and risk management processes, we can help you reduce your insurance premiums and claims management costs, and protect and build your company's reputation.

Major incident management

In the unfortunate event of a fatality, our workplace safety lawyers will attend regulatory interviews with you, prepare for and appear at any prosecution or coronial inquiries and inquests or Ministerial Inquiry or Commission of Inquiry and assist you with this difficult process. We can also assist you with managing any civil claims that may arise following a major incident.

Our law firm's OHS expertise has seen us involved in numerous major workplace incidents, investigations, Ministerial Inquiries, Commissions of Inquiry, coronial inquiries and inquests and prosecutions relating to fatalities in our clients' operations.

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Awareness, compliance and prevention

Our team works with clients to minimise legal risks through proactive awareness and prevention strategies including the provision of customised training, presentations on safety duties to boards and management, developing customised safety polices and on-line compliance tools and providing legal advice on safety issues.

We also advise clients on strategies to deal with potential criminal and civil liabilities at corporate and director levels.

Perhaps more than ever, it is important to keep abreast of legal change and fluctuations in market practice. Our lawyers have their fingers on the pulse and can help you do just that. We work with you to develop and deliver bespoke programmes to develop deeper awareness and instil a culture of OHS compliance right across your business.

Our awareness and prevention experience in occupational health and safety law includes:

  • Working with public utilities in providing training to executive management teams on their legal obligations with respect to health and safety
  • Advising on safety obligations arising from work-from-home arrangements and developing suitable safety policies
  • Preparing OHS manuals and guidelines for the executive leadership team and legal counsel of a multinational mining corporation and its contractors, conducting safety training courses and assisting with safety audits of its operations
  • Helping mining companies and engineering companies to develop OHS incident procedures and assisting with incident response training
  • Advising large financial institutions on the OHS obligations for the cash-in-transit industry and developing contractual provisions to manage risk in cash-handling operations
  • Market leading technology and telecommunications clients on developing sophisticated OHS systems, policies and compliance procedures as well as a health and safety training program
  • Media and entertainment clients In relation to consultation obligations under OHS legislation.

Proactive risk management

Our team encourages proactive risk minimisation by working with clients to continually improve their legal compliance processes and management of OHS law risks including by conducting legal compliance audits, due diligence, implementing risk management procedures, reviewing and advising on insurance contracts and advice on regulatory issues.

Our other experience in occupational health and safety law includes:

  • Assisting public utilities to conduct audit of health and safety practices with respect to public safety
  • Global mining company – auditing of OHS law compliance on operating mine sites.
  • Advising in relation to numerous corporate due diligences in relation to purchase and sale of business contracts on the occupational health and safety law aspects of the transaction.
  • Conducting gap analysis for clients in relation to compliance with changes to health and safety laws and advising on the steps required to attain full compliance
  • Advising numerous clients on the OHS and insurance clauses to negotiate in commercial contracts
  • Working with client in negotiating OHS provisions in the contract for the construction of a major hospital.

Spotlight on safety

Our dedicated national team regularly shares their insights into developments related to workplace safety matters in the ‘Spotlight on Safety’ blog.

We have a full team specialising in this area.

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