Eighteen months on from the review of WorkSafe New Zealand’s performance of its regulatory functions in relation to activities on Whakaari White Island WorkSafe has continued to strengthen its administration of the Health and Safety at Work (Adventure Activities) Regulations 2016 (the Regulations).

Independent review of WorkSafe in relation to Whakaari/White Island(external link)

This has included addressing the specific recommendations of the review, improvements suggested by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s (MBIE)’s targeted review of the adventure activities regulatory regime(external link), WorkSafe’s adventure activities regulatory health check [PDF, 82 KB] and other internal WorkSafe reviews.

Since the previous update in October 2021 WorkSafe has worked to help strengthen the way the Adventure Activities regime operates, including when activities take place in naturally hazardous environments.  WorkSafe has:

  • Reviewed and revised the New Zealand Adventure Activities Certification Scheme. The revised Scheme was published in January 2023 and is now with safety auditors for implementation by May 2023. The Scheme sets out requirements for how safety auditors plan and conduct audits of adventure activity operators.
  • Worked with MBIE on amendments to the Regulations that address suggested improvements from MBIE’s targeted review. These amendments are being consulted on with industry and are expected to be issued in mid/late 2023.
  • Reviewed and revised the Safety Audit Standard for Adventure Activities. Final release of the Standard will occur after the amendments to the Regulations currently being progressed by MBIE have been finalised to ensure consistency. All other work prior to this final step have been completed. This Standard sets out the requirements with which adventure activity operators must comply to reduce risks to health and safety when providing adventure activities.
  • Developed a suite of operational policies and procedures for dealing with various aspects of our duties as both the regulator and registrar for adventure activities. This work is expected to be completed by the end of June 2023.
  • Started to work with industry (through Recreation Aotearoa and Tourism Industry Aotearoa) to identify which specific new adventure activities guidelines are most valuable.