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Your legal duties

The Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 and the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations 2017 set out the key principles, duties, rights and responsibilities in relation to workplace health and safety.

Health and safety requirements for the construction industry are summarised in the following publications:

These requirements, which are consistent with the National Standard for Construction Work, build upon industry's existing safety practices by setting out specific OHS responsibilities for principal contractors, employers, employees and self-employed people.

Minimum safety requirements

The regulations include requirements for:

  • principal contractors to prepare health and safety co-ordination plans for construction projects costing $350,000 or more
  • employers and self-employed people to prepare safe work method statements for high-risk construction work
  • employees to be given OHS induction training before undertaking construction work
  • employees to be trained about site-specific risks and control measures before starting work on a construction site.

OHS training for construction work is mandatory. To book in for training, contact a Registered Training Organisation

How can I find out more?

If you work in the general construction industry, you should read the WorkSafe publication Working safely in the general construction industry – A handbook for the construction regulations

If you work in the housing construction industry, you should read the WorkSafe publication Working safely in the housing construction industry – A handbook for the construction regulations

If you do not work in the construction industry, but you or your employees may carry out construction work, you should read the WorkSafe publication Is construction work part of your business? to help you understand if the regulations apply to you.

For more information and advice or to order copies of these publications contact the WorkSafe Advisory Service.

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