Definitions

Accident: any occurrence which results in personal injury, disease or death, or property damage.

Audit: a systematic examination against defined criteria to determine whether activities and related results conform to planned arrangements, whether these arrangements are implemented effectively, and whether they are suitable for achieving the School’s objectives.

BEES: School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences.

Competent Person: a person who has acquired through training, qualification, experience, or a combination of these, the knowledge and skills required to perform the task required.

Continual Improvement: the process of enhancing the implemented HS Management System to achieve improvement in HS performance.

Contractor: any individual or organisation responsible for the performance of work specified in a contract, including vendor, seller, supplier, fabricator, manufacturer, consultant or services provider.

Dangerous Goods: are substances or articles that pose a risk to people, property or the environment, due to their chemical or physical properties

Electrical Testing and Tagging: the process whereby all workplace electrical equipment of the plug-in type is visually inspected and electrically tested and tagged in accordance with AS3760.

Fieldwork: any work, study or research authorised by UNSW and conducted by staff, postgraduate students, undergraduate students or volunteers at a site other than the Kensington, Randwick or Paddington campuses, or the Bankstown flight training facility. Note: where staff work at a remote field station (e.g. Fowlers Gap), this location is taken to be their normal place of work, and these staff are not deemed to be taking part in fieldwork activity.

Hazard: a situation at the workplace capable of causing harm (that is, capable of causing personal injury, work related disease or death, or property damage).

Hazardous Chemicals: encompassingterm used in WHS Act and Regulation to cover materials formerly describes as hazardous substances and dangerous goods. 

Hazard Identification: the process relating to recognising the existence of a hazard and of defining the characteristics of the hazard.

Hazardous Manual Tasks: any activity requiring a person to exert force to lift, lower, push, pull, carry or otherwise move, hold, restrain any animate or inanimate object involving one or more of the following factors that may directly stress the body and lead to injury - repetitive or sustained force, high or sudden force, repetitive movement, sustained or awkward posture, or excessive vibration.

Hazardous Substances: term used in previous legislation to refer to Hazardous Chemicals Hazardous substances were chemicals that have the potential to harm the health of persons in the workplace, including chemicals scheduled under the Poisons Act and the Dangerous Goods Act, and hazardous wastes.

HSCC: Health and Safety Consultative Committee.

HSMS (HS Management System): that part of the overall management system which includes the organisational structure, planning activities, responsibilities, practices, procedures, processes and resources for developing, implementing, achieving, reviewing and maintaining the HS policy, and so managing the HS risks associated with the business of the organisation.

Incident: any occurrence, including a near-miss situation, which has the potential to cause personal injury, disease or death, or property damage.

Induction: the introduction of workers and others to HS requirements within the School, offices and laboratories.

Laboratory: any building or part of a building used, or intended to be used, for scientific or technical work which might be hazardous, including research, quality control, testing, teaching or analysis.  Such work might involve the use of chemicals, including Dangerous Goods, pathogens and harmful radiation, and processes associated with electrical and mechanical equipment that could be hazardous.  A laboratory includes support areas such as instrument and preparation rooms, store rooms, and offices attached or adjacent to it.

Note 1: In a multi-occupancy building the area occupied by the laboratory may be referred to as the laboratory area.

Note 2: AS/NZS 2982 contains definitions of various types of laboratory.

Laboratory Supervisor: the person who is accountable to the Head of School or laboratory manager for the day-to-day functions of a laboratory or designated section thereof.

Laboratory Waste: all liquid, solid or gaseous material that results from laboratory operations and is no longer needed.

Manual Handling: term no longer in use – see Hazardous Manual Task.

Plant: any machinery, equipment (including scaffolding), appliance, implement or tool and any component or fitting thereto or accessory thereof.

Register: a documented record of occurrences, activities, plant or resources which is used to track changes or improvements in the operation of the HSMS.

Risk: the chance of something happening that will have an impact on objectives.  It is measured in terms of consequence and likelihood. In the context of HS, risk should be thought of as the HS consequence of a given severity versus the likelihood of that particular consequence occurring (see HS329 Risk Management Procedure).

Risk Assessment: the risk rating procedure (consideration of the consequences and likelihood of occurrence) involved in Risk Management to determine if risks are low, medium or high.

Risk Management: the documented 4-step process for managing risks to health and safety associated with materials, equipment or activities, i.e. identify the hazards, assess the risks (to prioritise the implementation of risk controls), control the risks (using the hierarchy of risk controls) & Review the effectiveness of the risk controls

Safe Work Procedure (SWP): a written instruction, based on the risk management procedure that outlines the preferred and safest method for undertaking a task. May also be referred to as Safe Work Method Statement

Safety: the provision and control of work environment systems and human behaviour which together give relative freedom from those conditions and circumstances which can cause personal injury, disease, death or property damage.

Shall, Should, May: ‘shall’ implies a mandatory statement; ‘should’ implies and advisory statement; ‘may’ implies the right to use discretion.

SDS (Safety Data Sheet): a document prepared by the manufacturer or supplier of a product that clearly states its hazardous nature, ingredients, precautions to follow, health effects and safe handling/storage information.

Standard Operating Procedure (SOP): see Safe Work Procedure.

Supervisor: a person appointed by the Head of School to be accountable for all functions of a particular area or process.

Visitor: a member of the public other than staff, students or contractors who enters a work area for personal or professional reasons.

WHS Policy: a statement by UNSW of its commitment, intentions and principles in relation to its overall work health and safety performance which provides a framework for action and for the setting of its HS objectives and targets.

Working Alone: work carried out in an area where normal means of contact with other staff are not available, so that the potential risk of existing hazards is increased to the extent that extra precautions are needed.  This could include working in isolated areas on or off site, either during or outside normal working hours.