1. That the OPGGS Act be amended to provide for:

(i)      a requirement for consultation with the relevant unions in the development of the initial safety case;

(ii)     a requirement for a review of the safety case to take place with the workforce once hired (and before the commencement of operations, where possible) to ensure that they understand    the safety case, its risks and the safety management system;

(i)        a requirement for HSRs to be provided with a copy of the safety case, including by remote online access; and

(ii)       an ability for an HSR to trigger a review and revision of the safety case in certain circumstances.


2. That the OPGGS Act be amended to provide for consistency with the WHS Act in respect of:

(i)      recognition of the role of industrial organisations in the statutory objects;

(ii)      the rights, powers and entitlements of HSRs, including but not limited to the matters identified in paragraph [23] above;

(iii)     union right of entry for work health and safety purposes (subject to the necessary modifications in recommendation 3); and

(iv)     a licensing system for workers performing high risk work.


3. That any right of entry for work health and safety purposes established under the OPGGS Act provide for:

(i)      a requirement for the occupier to facilitate transport of the permit holder for right of entry purpose;

(ii)     the cost of transport of the permit holder for right of entry purposes to be recovered from industry by the levy revenue to the NOPSEMA; and

(iii)     an ability for the permit holder to exercise one entry for the purpose of inquiring into multiple suspected contraventions of the OPGGS Act, including additional contraventions identified during the course of the entry.


4. That the penalties in both the OPGGS Act and the WHS Act be significantly increased, in line with best practice responsive regulation.


5. That the NOPSEMA’s Enforcement Policy be amended so that its response escalates for each instance of non-compliance by the same organisation or in respect of the same facility.


6. That the NOPSEMA be directed to comply with the Enforcement Policy in respect of taking prosecution action where there has been repeated non-compliance with the legislation.


7. That the NOPSEMA carry out regular unannounced inspections as part of its standard inspection regime.


8. That the OPGGS Act be amended to provide for:

(i)      equal representation of industry and the workforce on the NOPSEMA Board (the latter representatives to be nominated by the ACTU); and

(ii)       a requirement that the NOPSEMA consult with workers and their representatives in the exercise of its functions pertaining to work health and safety.


9. That a comprehensive assessment of coverage of Australian safety regulation in the maritime industry, including offshore petroleum, be conducted to develop a legislative reform package to ensure complete coverage.


10. That the NOPSEMA and the AMSA update their MOU, with particular focus on:

(i)      achieving clarity on the touch points between the two agencies and their legislations;

(ii)     reinstatement of joint inspection of vessels’ certification; and

(iii)     mechanisms to facilitate access to and inspections of vessels and facilities that transfer between their respective jurisdictions, including, for example, dual recognition of suitably qualified inspectors.


11. That the necessary legislative amendments be enacted to ensure the application of all International Maritime Organisation and International Labour Organisation Conventions given effect by the Navigation Act to vessels and facilities in the offshore petroleum industry.


12. That s 6 of the Safe Work Australia Act 2008 (Cth) be amended to confer on Safe Work Australia a statutory function to monitor and coordinate the activities and performance of all Commonwealth and State and Territory bodies with responsibility for work health and safety, including the NOPSEMA.


13. That the necessary legislative amendments be enacted to require regular meetings between the NOPSEMA and Safe Work Australia (eg quarterly or six monthly).


14. That the necessary legislative amendments be enacted to require the NOPSEMA to report on its industry performance data to Safe Work Australia, and for Safe Work Australia to collect and publish oil and gas industry data in a manner that distinguishes the onshore and offshore industries.


15. That the NOPSEMA be directed to attend the Heads of Workplace Safety Authorities meetings.


16. That the operator or employer should be required to notify the NOPSEMA of any intention to terminate the employment of an HSR or otherwise alter the position of the employee to the employee’s prejudice and to consult with the HSR and their representative about the proposed change before the change can be implemented.


17. That the NOPSEMA regularly communicate directly with HSRs and provide an opportunity for HSRs to communicate confidentially with an inspector prior to and after the inspection. Consideration should also be given to amending the OPGGS Act to require the operator to provide the inspector with a private room to meet with HSRs and workers during an inspection and to not unreasonably prevent more than one worker meeting with the inspector at a time.


18. That the NOPSEMA develop, in consultation with stakeholders, an HSR engagement policy.


19. That the NOPSEMA sponsor and lead an annual HSR forum.


20. That the NOPSEMA establish an online portal for HSRs to communicate with each other confidentially.


21. That the NOPSEMA establish a dedicated advice and support phone line for HSRs to speak directly and confidentially to an inspector or other expert for advice and support in performing their role and to report a safety issue.


22. That the OPSSG Act be amended to provide for:

(i)      a right for HSRs to attend to work health and safety business during work hours or while on board a facility, including a requirement for the person conducting the business or undertaking to provide HSRs time to hold meetings and discussions with workers in respect of work health and safety matters during work hours or while on board a facility; and

(ii)     a requirement that the NOPSEMA maintain a register of HSRs, recording at least their name, employer, facility, the date on which they were elected to the position and the date on which they completed the mandatory training.


23. That consideration be given to circumscribing or regulating contracting arrangements to maximise job security in the offshore petroleum industry.


24. That consideration be given to mechanisms that would achieve better work health and safety standards and outcomes for workers in insecure forms of employment such as casual and labour hire, including additional training specific to those employment categories or roving HSRs to assist these types of workers.


25. That consideration be given to circumscribing or regulating rostering arrangements to ensure that workers are not away from their home and family life for extended periods and have sufficient rest time between swings; for example, by amending r 95 of the OPGGS Regulations to require minimum continuous and uninterrupted periods off work and away from the workplace.


26. That consideration be given to requiring a minimum handover period between crew change which must occur during the workers’ normal working hours and rostered on swing, particularly between HSRs and safety committee members.


27. That the Minister for Jobs and Small Business approve the Code of Practice: Health and Safety in Shipboard Work, including Offshore Support Vessels, as soon as possible, and well before the previous Code expires on 1 April 2019.


28. That the inquiry closely monitors the NOPSEMA’s review of the DOF Subsea June/July 2017 diving incident.


29. That consideration be given to a requirement that an independent investigator be appointed where a conflict arises that compromises the ability of the NOPSEMA to carry out an independent investigation.