ISO committee reject first draft of ISO 45001

The new international standard for Occupational Health and Safety ISO 45001 has been delayed after the ISO committee disapproved the first draft.

The committee, which is made up of national standard bodies, elected to work on the development of the draft international standard (DIS) voted 71% for the draft and 21% against (1% abstained from the vote).

The vote, which took place from February 12th until May 12th, requires committee members to pass the draft with 75% in favor and less than 25% against.

During the voting period over 3000 comments were added to the draft. This high level of feedback will need to be reviewed by all committee members which will push the ISO standard back to February 2017.

So far ISO 45001’s journey to publication has not been a smooth one. In October 2014 ISO 45001 did not receive the two thirds of votes needed to get the standard into the process of preparation. This resulted in being revised and voted on a second time.

This failed vote meant that members of ISO committee PC 283 considered the draft as not sufficiently complete. The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) at this time also launched an appeal against the draft ISO 45001 standard as they felt the text tends to place the responsibility for accidents occurring in the workplace solely on the workers, while excluding the same workers from health & safety management.

This new delay is a blow for ISO 45001 as many in the industry hoped to have the standard active in October 2016. Michael Brophy, CEO of Certification Europe, commented saying he was disappointed with the latest delay and surprised by the 3000 comments that are attached to the standard for review. “I hope this will be the final delay and that ISO 45001 can finally come to market as it is sorely needed to help organisations reduce the burden by providing a framework to help reduce workplace risks and create safer working conditions for all”.

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Robert Lyons
Robert Lyons

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