Do you want to be allowed to use the same cylinders as people in Australia, Europe and North America? To be legally allowed to put helium in your tanks? To use mixes with O2 less than 21% or greater than 40%? To do an O2 flush at 6m?
Industry in agreement WorkSafe alert released
In a commendably bold move in January 2017, NZUA asked its members to stop testing and filling cylinders identified as being hazardous in a WorkSafe safety notice. This followed reports of an accident resulting in the loss of a man’s limb in Australia in August 2016 and an accident in Bali.
It took some time, but on 31 July 2017, WorkSafe issued a notice withdrawing design approvals for these cylinders from 31 October 2017.
Thank you to NZUA, CTLA and WorkSafe for sorting this out.
WorkSafe agrees! Work has begun!
WorkSafe have asked MBIE to update the new regulations so that they “provide for WorkSafe to issue a Safe Work Instrument, which will allow other air [sic] mixtures not currently covered by AS/NZS2299.1:2015 to be used.” They say that it will require “technical and policy work, followed by a period of public consultation on the proposal.”
Hopefully we can keep it simple like “...any mixture of gases is allowed, subject to divers being appropriately trained in their use.”
WorkSafe, thank you for your positive approach to this issue and for finding a path to a potential solution. Let’s do this!
Officials say has merit Officials have postponed action
Officials said that “there is merit” in the petition but that it should be reviewed along with a more general future review of regulations. If this course were taken, it would be years before any changes were implemented.
We will ask the new government to prioritise this work higher.
WorkSafe asked the Select Committee to ask the petitioner to ask the dive community for information about the extent of the problems. A survey of technical divers was run over a few days before the committee meeting to help answer their questions.
The survey results were provided to the committee without names and email addresses, but comments were included. 40 of the 89 respondents have cylinders without LAB and SP numbers.