FAQs on the reporting of health and hygiene sampling through the Safety Regulation System

What has changed?

On 13 May 2017 the Health and Hygiene Sampling sub-system was introduced and made accessible through the Safety Regulation System (SRS). This replaces the CONTAM system.

The new functionality:

  • Enables industry to submit sampling results for personal exposure to airborne contaminants, noise and biological agents via SRS; and
  • Allows industry to provide further information including, contributory factors and proposed actions for samples identified as exceedances during the lodgement.

What if I don’t have access to SRS?

New users without a Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS) ‘ex-account’ should contact an existing Safety Regulation System (SRS) company administrator in their organisation and ask to be registered and granted security roles.

If there is no SRS company administrator for a particular SRS sub-system the person should register themselves via the DMIRS online system.

If you are unsure of who the Company Administrator is for the Health and Hygiene sub-system, contact the Hygiene Manager (see Who can I contact?)

Who can submit samples?

Anyone with security access to the Health and Hygiene sub-system in SRS will be able to submit the results of atmospheric sampling, biological monitoring and personal noise dosimetry. For atmospheric and noise samples, the person submitting the data will be required to specify the details of the registered sampler or approved noise officer who took the samples.

Third parties, such as contractors or consultants, can input data, if granted the relevant SRS security access by the company administrator acting on behalf of the Registered Manager and Principal Employer.

Note: Samples per person, per sampling equipment for atmospheric and biological agents will still need to be entered individually.

Who will be able to access the samples?

Any users with security for the Health and Hygiene sub-system will be able to access all samples for the site they have access to – not just ones they have submitted themselves.

How do I lodge multiple samples electronically?

SRS has a bulk lodgement function that will allow you to submit multiple hygiene samples using an XML file. Please contact the Hygiene Manager (see Who can I contact?) to find out more about this option.

Can I add to what I am currently reporting on through the bulk lodgement functionality?

Yes. For instance, if you are reporting atmospheric sampling you can add the results of noise and biological sampling. Please contact the Hygiene Manager (see Who can I contact?) to discuss what changes are required.

What SRS alerts will I receive when I submit samples?

The person who entered the sample will receive an alert if:

  • An Inspector requests further information on a submitted sample.
  • The “complete exceedance analysis later” box is selected.

For users currently using the bulk lodgement functionality, an alert will be sent for each exceedance.

Who can I contact?

The Hygiene Manger
Email: SRShygienemanager@dmirs.wa.gov.au
Phone: (08) 9358 8001 (then select option 2)

Specific queries related to health and hygiene reporting

Do sites still need to keep a Ventilation Log Book?

Yes, a ventilation log book must still be kept in accordance regulation 9.7. of the Mines Safety and Inspection Regulations 1995.

Have the sampling periods changed?

No. Quotas are set for the financial year with four sampling periods:

  • Quarter 1– July to September
  • Quarter 2 – October to December
  • Quarter 3 – January to March
  • Quarter 4 – April to June

How are exceedances reported?

When samples are entered, those that exceed the exposure standard will automatically be identified and additional information will be required.

Industry can optionally provide an exceedance analysis for any noise, biological and atmospheric sample. This functionality allows industry to submit an exceedance analysis in line with;

  • The sampled persons adjusted exposure standard based on shift length, and/or
  • Company specified action level (below the exposure standard).

The option to complete an exceedance analysis also applies to bulk lodgement. Users currently using this functionality can do this by clicking <Exceedance Analysis> when viewing the details of an individual sample.

Note: Information on exceedances (and their actions) is available in the Exceedance Actions tab.

What information do I need to provide when there is an exceedance of the exposure standard?

If an exceedance analysis is required (or selected), further information will need to be entered. You will also need to provide details of the contributing factor(s) and any action(s) required to eliminate or reduce the risk of subsequent exposures. When entering the proposed actions in the exceedance analysis step, the hierarchy of controls should be applied.

Hierarchy of Control

For a noise sample, what is meant by ‘expected attenuation’?

If the person sampled has been fit-tested, the expected attenuation is defined as the individuals fit testing results from the Hearing Protection Device (HPD) used at the time the sample was taken.

If the person sampled has not been fit-tested, enter the lowest level of noise attenuation (reduction) that can be expected from the HPD as highlighted in the table below.

AS/NZS 1269.3

Class LAeq,8h dB(A) SLC 80 Range
1 less than 90 10 to 13
2 90 to less than 95 14 to 17
3 95 to less than 100 18 to 21
4 100 to less than 105 22 to 25
5 105 to less than 110 26 or greater

 

 

Do I need to submit ‘peak’ and ‘STEL’ samples?

Peak and STEL samples are not required to be submitted to the department. However, regulatory requirements still apply if the level of atmospheric contaminant in a workplace exceeds the peak or STEL exposure standard.

How do I become a registered sampler or noise officer?

To collect atmospheric and noise samples the person is required to be a registered hygiene sampler or an approved noise officer respectively. Details of this process are below.