Short Courses

Rail Safety National Law & OHS Legislation: Engineer & Designer Obligations

Learn to demonstrate safety due diligence to eliminate risks to health and safety, and comply with rail legislation and regulations.
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Learn to demonstrate safety due diligence to eliminate risks to health and safety, and comply with rail legislation and regulations.

Under the provisions of the Work Health and Safety (WHS) legislation (OHS legislation in Victoria) and Rail Safety National Law, Accredited Rail Organisations (ARO) are required to demonstrate safety due diligence. That is, to eliminate risks to health and safety so far as is reasonably practicable (SFAIRP), and if risks to health and safety cannot be reasonably eliminated, to reduce those risks SFAIRP.

Mere compliance with legislation and regulation does not make anything safe in reality. The laws of nature regarding rail safety issues need to be established then safely managed to the satisfaction of the law. Doing so in this order demonstrates SFAIRP safety due diligence.

This course will outline the paradigm shift from hazard-based risk management to the precautionary approach enshrined in the legislation. 

We will also detail the process that will enable organisations to demonstrate safety due diligence in ways that are useful to engineers and designers so that senior decision makers can make diligent decisions.

EA members

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*1% credit card surcharge applies.

Any questions?

3.25 hours
Location & dates

31 July


31 October

Additional Information

This course will run on the following dates:

31 July 2024, 9am – 12:15pm AEST

31 October 2024, 10am – 1:15pm AEDT


Registrations close three business days before the start of each session.

We can customise this course for groups of six or more.

You choose the time, place, duration and format.

Find out how we can help you and your team by clicking on the button below to request a quote or calling us directly on +61 3 9321 1700.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand the legal duties of directors to demonstrate due diligence under the provisions of Rail Safety National Law and the Victorian OHS Act.
  • Learn what constitutes due diligence under Australian High Court case (common) law.
  • Determine what risk management technique(s) can be used to establish due diligence, and in which circumstances.
  • Provide an understanding that legislative and regulatory compliance ≠ due diligence, especially for safety matters.
  • Understand that, to demonstrate safety due diligence, the management of the laws of nature is always logically prior to the management of the laws of man.
  • Understand how single line threat-barrier diagrams based on case law studies assist designers and decision-makers.
Is this course for you?

Is this course for you?

This course suits engineers across all disciplines, especially engineers involved in the rail industry.

Other relevant roles include:

  • Designers
  • Project Managers

There are no prerequisites for this course.

Topics we'll cover

Topics we'll cover

  • Rail Safety National Law
  • Victorian OHS Legislation including Criminal Manslaughter
  • Acting as an expert witness
  • Positively Demonstrating Safety Due Diligence
Gaye Francis
Richard Robinson
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