Major changes to safety standards for theme parks and amusement rides in Queensland announced

Major changes on amusement ride safety standards have been announced by the Queensland Government.

Industrial Relations Minister Grace Grace said the safety of families and visitors is a top priority for them.

“We are absolutely committed to doing all we can to provide the highest safety standards and public confidence when it comes to rides at carnivals, school fairs, and our major theme parks,” she said.

Queensland’s Amusement Device Working Group made up of industry stakeholders received the draft Work Health and Safety (Amusement Devices – Public Safety) Amendment Regulation 2018 as part of an ongoing consultation.

This signals the final stages of the development of these important reforms,” said Ms. Grace.

“Importantly, the Coroner overseeing the Dreamworld Inquest will also be provided with a copy of the proposed regulation changes and will also be consulted.”

The proposed regulatory changes centre around 4 key areas: mandatory requirements for ride operators to be fully trained and competent; mandatory major inspections of all amusement and theme park rides; major theme parks to develop and implement a comprehensive and integrated safety management system; additional record keeping through detailed log books.

“Mandatory training and competency requirements will mean every amusement and theme park ride in Queensland will be operated by a person who has been properly trained and assessed as competent,” said Ms. Grace.

“This means amusement rides at our big theme parks right down to a local show or fairs will be subject to major and comprehensive inspections every ten years, unless otherwise specified by the manufacturer.”

Ms. Grace said the inspections may include completely stripping down a ride to ensure its integrity, including the removal of paint and grease.

“These mandatory checks will be on top of our existing inspection and testing regime, which includes annual inspections and regular maintenance inspections,” she said.

The state’s major theme parks will also be required to develop a comprehensive and integrated plan for managing safety.

There will be engineers and specialist WHSQ inspectors who will routinely audit the major theme parks against these comprehensive plans, along with other legislative and regulatory requirements.

Ride owners will be required to keep detailed individual ride log books.

The Queensland Government would also consider the development of a code of practice to support the regulations.

“The code of practice may include provisions relating to training delivery, identification cards for ride operators and publicly displayed certificates on rides,” said Ms. Grace.

“The regulations are expected to be in place by the end of the year, or as soon as practically possible.”

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