New model WHS Regulations to Enhance Worker Protection against Silicosis 

17/06/2024by admin0Read: < 1 minute

On May 10, WHS ministers agreed to two sets of amendments to the model WHS Regulations aimed at combating silicosis, a lung disease caused by exposure to respirable crystalline silica.

These amendments will enforce the engineered stone ban starting July 1, 2024, and introduce stricter regulations for all materials containing crystalline silica from September 1, 2024.

Engineered Stone Prohibition:

The first set of amendments includes two new national frameworks related to the engineered stone ban to protect workers from silicosis. These frameworks cover notifying WHS regulators about permitted work with legacy engineered stone and applying for exemptions for certain types of engineered stone, effective from July 1, 2024.

Transition Period: Some jurisdictions will allow certain work with engineered stone to continue until December 31, 2024.

Crystalline Silica Regulation:

The second set of amendments introduces stronger regulations for all materials containing crystalline silica, starting September 1, 2024. These regulations covering industries like tunnelling and quarrying, will enhance protection against respirable crystalline silica exposure.

The existing model Code of Practice will be revoked on June 30, 2024. A new Code reflecting the prohibition and new requirements will be developed. New requirements include developing a Silica Risk Control Plan, additional worker training, air and health monitoring, and reporting exposure standard exceedances.

Each jurisdiction will need to incorporate these amendments into their work health and safety laws to enforce the ban and the stronger regulations within their respective areas.

Safe Work Australia is developing guidance to help PCBUs understand how these changes will impact them.

Anitech will keep you posted with the latest guidelines and news to help your businesses safeguard workers from silicosis.

Stay tuned to our website for future updates.

If you want to understand these changes better, contact our team of occupational hygienists at at 1300 802 163, or e-mail– sales@anitechgroup.com.


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