853. Hon ROBIN SCOTT to the minister representing the Minister for
Commerce and Industrial Relations:
(1) Is the
minister aware of media reports of a spike in silicosis in Queensland,
attributed to the dry-cutting of stone products?
(2) Are any Western
Australian workers at risk of silicosis through dry-cutting of stone products?
I thank the honourable member for
some notice of the question. On behalf of the Minister for Regional Development
representing the Minister for Commerce and Industrial Relations, I provide the
(2) Working with
silica is a known hazard. The potential for silicosis, if safe systems of work
involving silica are not followed, is also known. Numerous provisions within
the Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996 impose various duties with
respect to crystalline silica as a defined ''hazardous substance''.
The website of the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety contains
safety alerts and information bulletins on the risks of silica exposure and
guidance on specific safety control measures to mitigate those risks.
If known, the government would
greatly appreciate DMIRS being provided with the details of workplaces where
workers are being placed at risk of silicosis by dry-cutting stone products.