What is a WHS Management Plan?
A Work Health & Safety (WHS) Management Plan is a written plan that describes the arrangements for managing various site safety management matters. The WHS Management Plan is prepared by the principal contractor prior to commencing the construction project. The WHS Management Plan must be readily available and all individuals must be made aware of its contents prior to commencing work on the site. A principal contractor must review and revise the WHS management plan as necessary, to ensure that it remains relevant for the construction project. The WHS management plan must be kept until the work is completed or for two years after a notifiable incident.

What is the purpose of a WHS Management Plan?
The purpose of the WHS management Plan is to ensure that the risks associated with a complex construction project are managed, as there can be many contractors and subcontractors involved and circumstances can change quickly day to day.

What information does a WHS Management Plan provide?
The WHS Management Plan must include:

  • the names and positions of those on the site responsible for health and safety;
  • the consultation arrangements between the all the principal contractors and how they will consult, cooperate and coordinate their activities;
  • the arrangements for managing work health and safety rules and how they will be communicated on site;
  • any site specific health and safety rules and how they will be communicated on site;
  • the arrangements for the collection, assessment, monitoring and review of SWMS at the workplace; and
  • all Safety Work Method Statements (SWMS) required for high risk construction work prior to this work commences.

Are WHS Management Plans required on all construction sites?
A WHS Management Plan is a requirement for all principal contractors, for construction projects where the total cost is $250,000 or more. The maximum penalty for failing to have a WHS Management Plan in place when it is required is a fine of $6,000 for an individual and $30,000 for a body corporate (clause 309 (1) (a), (b) Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011).

If you require help in preparing a WHS Management plan, the team of lawyers at The Quinn Group can help. Call us on 02 9223 9166, or fill out an online enquiry.