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Occupational health & safety act 85 of 1993

24 November 2011

Definitions:

"employer" means, subject to the provisions of subsection (2), any person who employs or provides work for any person and remunerates that person or expressly or tacitly undertakes to remunerate him, but excludes a labour broker as defined in section I (1) of the Labour Relations Act, 1956 (Act No. 28 of 1956);

 

"employee" means, subject to the provisions of subsection (2), any person who is employed by or works for an employer and who receives or is entitled to receive any remuneration or who works under the direction or supervision of an employer or any other person;

 

                        "biological monitoring" means a planned programme of periodic collection and analysis of body fluid, tissues, excreta or exhaled                       air in order to detect and quantify the exposure to or absorption of any substance or organism by persons;

 

"workplace" means any premises or place where a person performs work in the course of his employment.

 

"work" means work as an employee or as a self-employed person, and for such purpose an employee is deemed to be at work during the time that he is in the course of his employment, and a self-employed person is deemed to be at work during such time as he devotes to work as a self-employed person;

 

"danger" means anything which may cause injury or damage to persons or property;

 

safe" means free from any hazard;

 

"risk" means the probability that injury or damage will occur;

 

"hazard" means a source of or exposure to danger;

 

"healthy" means free from illness or injury attributable to occupational causes;

 

"incident" means an incident as contemplated in section 24 (1);

 

"substance" includes any solid, liquid, vapour, gas or aerosol, or combination thereof;

 

"occupational hygiene" means the anticipation, recognition, evaluation and control of conditions arising in or from the workplace, which may cause illness or adverse health effects to persons;

 

"reasonably practicable" means practicable having regard to-

 

(a)       the severity and scope of the hazard or risk concerned;

(b)       the state of knowledge reasonably available concerning that hazard or risk and of any means of removing or mitigating that hazard or risk;

(c)        the availability and suitability of means to remove or mitigate that hazard or risk; and

(d)       the cost of removing or mitigating that hazard or risk in relation to the benefits deriving therefrom;

 

 

Section 8.                                                                                                                                                     

 

General duties of employers to their employees

(1)             Every employer shall provide and maintain, as far as is reasonably practicable, a working environment that is safe and without risk to the health of his employees.

(2)            Without derogating from the generality of an employer's duties under subsection (1), the matters to which those duties refer include in particular-

(a)            the provision and maintenance of systems of work, plant and machinery that, as far as is reasonably practicable, are safe and without risks to health;

(b)            taking such steps as may be reasonably practicable to eliminate or mitigate any hazard or potential hazard to the safety or health of employees, before resorting to personal protective equipment;

(c)             making arrangements for ensuring, as far as is reasonably practicable, the safety and absence of risks to health in connection with the production, processing, use, handling, storage or transport of articles or substances;

(d)            establishing, as far as is reasonably practicable, what hazards to the health or safety of persons are attached to any work which is performed, any article or substance which is produced, processed, used, handled, stored or transported and any plant or machinery which is used in his business, and he shall, as far as is reasonably practicable, further establish what precautionary measures should be taken with respect to such work, article, substance, plant or machinery in order to protect the health and safety of persons, and he shall provide the necessary means to apply such precautionary measures;

(e)            providing such information, instructions, training and supervision as may be necessary to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety at work of his employees;

 

(f)             as far as is reasonably practicable, not permitting any employee to do any work or to produce, process, use, handle, store or transport any article or substance or to operate any plant or machinery, unless the precautionary measures contemplated in paragraphs (b) and (d), or any other precautionary measures which may be prescribed, have been taken;

(g)            taking all necessary measures to ensure that tire requirements of this Act are complied with by every person in his employment or on premises under his control where plant or machinery is used;

(h)            enforcing such measures as may be necessary in the interest of health and safety;

(i)              ensuring that work is performed and that plant or machinery is used under the general supervision of a person trained to understand the hazards associated with it and who have the authority to ensure that precautionary measures taken by the employer are implemented; and

(j)              causing all employees to be informed regarding the scope of their authority as contemplated in section 37 (1) (b).

Section 14.        General duties of employees at work                                

Every employee shall at work-

a)              take reasonable care for the health and safety of himself and of other persons who may be affected by his acts or omissions;

b)              as regards any duty or requirement imposed on his employer or any other person by this Act, co-operate with such employer or person to enable that duty or requirement to be performed or complied with;

 

c)               carry out any lawful order given to him, and obey the health and safety rules and procedures laid down by his employer or by anyone authorized thereto by his employer, in the interest of health or safety;

d)              if any situation which is unsafe or unhealthy comes to his attention, as soon as practicable report such situation to his employer or to the health and safety representative for his workplace or section thereof, as the case may be, who shall report it to the employer; and

e)              if he is involved in any incident which may affect his health or which has caused an injury to himself, report such incident to his employer or to anyone authorized thereto by the employer, or to his health and safety representative, as soon as practicable but not later than the end of the particular shift during which the incident occurred, unless the circumstances were such that the reporting of the incident was not possible, in which case he shall report the incident as soon as practicable thereafter.

Section 9.       

 

General duties of employers and self-employed persons to persons other than their employees

1.        Every employer shall conduct his undertaking in such a manner as to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that persons other than those in his employment who may be directly affected by his activities are not thereby exposed to hazards to their health or safety.

2.        Every self-employed person shall conduct his undertaking in such a manner as to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that he and other persons who may be directly affected by his activities are not thereby exposed to hazards to their health or safety.

Section 10.     

 

General duties of manufacturers and others regarding articles and substances for use at work

1.     Any person who designs, manufactures, imports, sells or supplies any article for use at work shall ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that the article is safe and without risks to health when properly used and that it complies with all prescribed requirements.

2.     Any person who erects or installs any article for use at work on or in any premises shall ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that nothing about the manner in which it is erected or installed makes it unsafe or creates a risk to health when properly used.

3.     Any person who manufactures, imports, sells or supplies any substance for use at work shall-

a.        ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that the substance is safe and without risks to health when properly used; and

 

b.        take such steps as may be necessary to ensure that information is available with regard to the use of the substance at work, the risks to health and safety associated with such substance, the conditions necessary to ensure that the substance will be safe and without risks to health when properly used and the procedures to be followed in the case of an accident involving such substance.

4.    Where a person designs, manufactures, imports, sells or supplies an article or substance for or to another person and that other person undertakes in writing to take specified steps sufficient to ensure, as far as is reasonably practicable, that the article or substance will comply with all prescribed requirements and will be safe and without risks to health when properly used, the undertaking shall have the effect of relieving the first mentioned person from the duty imposed upon him by this section to such an extent as may be reasonable having regard to the terms of the undertaking.

Section 13.

 

Duty to inform

without derogating from any specific duty imposed on an employer by this Act, every employer shall-

a)          as far as is reasonably practicable, cause every employee to be made conversant with the hazards to his health and safety attached to any work which he has to perform, any article or substance which he has to produce, process, use, handle, store or transport and any plant or machinery which he is required or permitted to use, as well as with the precautionary measures which should be taken and observed with respect to those hazards;

b)          inform the health and safety representatives concerned beforehand of inspections, investigations or formal inquiries of which he has been notified by an inspector, and of any application for exemption made by him in terms of section 40; and

c)          inform a health and safety representative as soon as reasonably practicable of the occurrence of an incident in the workplace or section of the workplace for which such representative has been designated.

Section 23.

 

Certain deductions prohibited

No employer shall in respect of anything which he is in terms of this Act required to provide or to do in the interest of the health or safety of an employee, make any deduction from any employee's remuneration or require or permit any employee to make any payment to him or any other person.   [S. 23 substituted by s. 6 of Act No. 181 of 1993.]

 

General Safety Regulation

Section 3.

 

First aid, emergency equipment and procedures

 

3.    (1)  An employer shall take all reasonable steps that are necessary under the circumstances, to ensure that persons at work receive prompt first aid treatment   in case of injury or emergency.

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