Employer Obligations

Employers in most countries have a legislated obligation to keep their employees safe from hazards they are exposed to at work, by taking measures to reduce the risk of illness and injury.


Sections 34-38 of the Workplace Health & Safety (WHS) Act 2011, requires Employers to minimise risks where reasonably practical to employees. To help Employers comply with the WHS legislation, Safe Work Australia in 2012 published the “Falling Objects Fact Sheet” that requires tools and materials to be tethered when working at heights.


According to the publication, Guidelines for the Prevention of Falls to meet the Requirement of the Health Safety in Employment Act 1992, all tools and equipment are to be attached by a cord unless another effective method is used to prevent a falling hazard. AS/NZS 4488 also requires all tools and equipment to be tethered at heights.


In the Code of Practice for Working Safely at Height, section stipulates that risks of falling objects must be mitigated, small tools must be secured to the person with the use of a lanyard. The Act also requires Employers not to merely follow the Law but take reasonably practical steps to proactively reduce risk to Employees.