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Upstream duties

Businesses who are in the supply chain (upstream) also have a duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that the work they do or the things they provide to other workplaces don't create health and safety risks. Businesses who: 

  • design plant, substances, or structures 
  • manufacture plant, substances, or structures 
  • import plant, substances, or structures 
  • supply plant, substances, or structures 
  • install, construct or commission plant or structures

must, so far as is reasonably practicable, make sure that the plant, substances, and structures designed, manufactured, imported or supplied (as relevant) are without health and safety risks when they are used for their intended purpose in a workplace.

Upstream businesses are in a strong position to eliminate or minimise risk. They can influence and sometimes eliminate health and safety risks through designing or manufacturing products that are safe for the end user.

Upstream businesses must also consider the potential health effects of products before they are used in a workplace by businesses who are ‘downstream' and their workers (eg a plant manufacturer should consider whether the noise level of their equipment could increase the risk of noise induced hearing loss).

  • Upstream businesses owe duties to downstream business, their workers and others.
  • Importers must ensure imported goods meet all New Zealand regulatory requirements.

These duties do not extend to the sale (by suppliers) of second-hand plant sold as is.

 

EXAMPLE

A poorly designed or manufactured saw (eg that is not guarded as outlined in ASNZ4024) creates the risk that it may injure the user. This risk is created by the saw designer and manufacturer (the upstream PCBU). The risk will flow through to the downstream PCBU business that purchases the saw, and the workers who have to use the saw as part of a daily work activity.

The following provides an overview of the duties of upstream businesses.

 

Duties of businesses who are designers, manufacturers, importers and suppliers of plant, substances and structures

 

Duty to, so far as is reasonably practicable, ensure plant, substances, or structures are without health and safety risks
Make sure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the plant, substance or structure  designed / manufactured / imported / supplied is without health and safety risks to people who:

  • use the plant, substance or structure at a workplace for its designed or manufactured purpose
  • handle the substance at a workplace 
  • store the plant or substance at a workplace 
  • construct the structure at a workplace 
  • carry out reasonably foreseeable workplace activities (such as inspection, cleaning, maintenance or repair) in relation to:
    • the manufacture, assembly or use of the plant, substance or structure for its designed or manufactured purpose
    • the proper storage, handling, decommissioning, dismantling or disposal of the plant, substance or structure
  • are at or in the vicinity of a workplace, and are exposed to the plant, substance or structure, or whose health and safety may be affected by a work activity listed.

 

Duty to test
Carry out calculations, analysis, tests or examinations needed to make sure the plant, substance or structure designed / manufactured / supplied is without health and safety risks so far as is reasonably practicable (or arrange the carrying out of such tests).

 

Duty to provide information
Provide adequate information to people who are provided with the design or the plant, structure or substance manufactured / imported / supplied. This includes information about:

  • each purpose for which the plant, substance or structure was designed or manufactured 
  • the results of any calculations, analyses, tests or examinations carried out to ensure the plant, substance or structure is without health and safety risks (in relation to a substance, this includes any hazardous properties of the substance identified by testing) 
  • any conditions necessary to make sure the plant, substance or structure is without health and safety risks (when used for its designed or manufactured purpose, or when being
    inspected, cleaned maintained or repaired, etc).

On request, make reasonable efforts to give the current relevant specified information to a person who carries out or is to carry out work activities listed above with the plant, structure or substance

 

Duties of businesses who are installers, constructors and commissioners of plant and structures

 

Duty to, so far as is reasonably practicable, ensure plant, substances, or structures are without health and safety risks 

Make sure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the way that the plant or structure is installed, constructed or commissioned is without health and safety risks to people who: 

  • install or construct the structure at a workplace use the plant or structure at a workplace for its installed, constructed or commissioned purpose
  • carry out reasonably foreseeable workplace
  • activities in relation to the proper use, decommissioning, dismantling, demolition or disposal of the plant or structure
  • are at, or in the vicinity of a workplace, and whose health and safety may be affected by a work activity listed.

 

Last updated 2 April 2016

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