On-the-spot fines for COVID-19 non-compliance from next week

Kim Treasure 24 September 2021
ACT WorkSafe commissioner Jacqueline Agius onsite with inspectors

ACT WorkSafe commissioner Jacqueline Agius on a previous site inspection. Photo: Supplied.

WorkSafe ACT is warning its work health and safety (WHS) and COVID-19 compliance campaign will step up next week, with on-the-spot fines issued for COVID-19 breaches.

WorkSafe ACT has been carrying out a targeted campaign in key ACT suburbs to ensure all WHS and COVID-19 obligations are being met, hitting jobsites in the suburbs of Taylor and Throsby this week.

Inspectors visited 43 sites in Taylor on Tuesday, 21 September, issuing a number of notices including:

  • 14 prohibition notices for not managing the risks of falling from heights; unsafe scaffolding and electrical equipment; and COVID-19-related non-compliance.
  • 67 improvement notices for inadequate housekeeping, site security and amenities; untested electrical equipment; not managing the risks of slips, trips and falls; and COVID-19-related non-compliance.

On Thursday, 23 September, 38 sites in Throsby were visited by seven teams of inspectors. Again, a number of notices were issued including:

  • Six prohibition notices, including three sites closed due to not managing the risks of falls, and unsafe electrical equipment.
  • 67 improvement notices for not managing the risks of falls; inadequate site security and amenities; untested electrical equipment; and COVID-19-related non-compliance.

ACT Work Health and Safety Commissioner Jacqueline Agius was onsite in Throsby.


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“We continue to see non-compliance in this sector,” she said. “And it’s not just COVID-19 non-compliance – around 50 per cent of the notices issued during this campaign are for not managing work health and safety risks.”

WorkSafe ACT has published a new checklist for the residential sector to assist duty holders to comply with their COVID-19 compliance. It clearly shows what is expected and what WorkSafe ACT inspectors will be looking at when auditing COVID-19 compliance.

“We continue to see common risks that are not being managed,” said Ms Agius. “COVID-19 compliance is in addition to duties for protecting health and safety of workers, not a substitute for it.

“To continually see these risks across the sector is unacceptable.”

On-the-spot fines for COVID-19 non-compliance will be issued from next week.


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