Under HSWA, PCBUs (which includes adventure activity operators) must notify WorkSafe as soon as possible after becoming aware that a notifiable event has occurred arising out of the conduct of their business or undertaking.

What is a notifiable event?

A notifiable event is defined by section 25 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA)(external link) as any of the following events that arise from work:

  • The death of a person
  • A notifiable injury or illness or
  • A notifiable incident

This link below provides more detailed information about what a PCBU needs to do if a notifiable event occurs. It also explains what events are notifiable and the notification process.

What events need to be notified

In addition to the notifiable events set out in HSWA, regulations 19A and 19B of the Health and Safety at Work (Adventure Activities) Regulations 2016 set out further sector-specific events that adventure activity operators must notify to WorkSafe under HSWA.

What are the adventure activity related notifiable incidents?

The incidents listed below, when they occur in connection with an adventure activity, are declared to be notifiable incidents under section 24(1)(m) of HSWA.

A notifiable incident under this section means an unplanned or uncontrolled incident in relation to a workplace that exposes a worker or any other person to a serious risk to that person’s health or safety arising from an immediate or imminent exposure to:

  • a natural hazard that is not routinely encountered during the ordinary course of the adventure activity (for example a storm, flooding, avalanche, landslip, rockfall, ice fall, or volcanic activity)
  • any time where safety-critical equipment used to provide an activity fails or malfunctions while in use or is found to be defective and at risk of failing or malfunctioning while in use
  • entrapment, entanglement or immobilisation including while in a vehicle or vessel
  • a fall from a height
  • a collision with an object, the ground, or another person
  • a collision between a vehicle and a person or object (including another vehicle), a vehicle overturning, or an inrush of water into a vehicle
  • a collision between a vessel and a person or object (other than another vessel), a vessel overturning.

The list of notifiable incidents for adventure activities can be viewed in the link below.

Regulation 19A Declaration of notifiable incidents(external link)

What are the specific adventure activity requirements for the declaration of notifiable injuries or illness?

In addition to the injuries and illnesses that must be notified to WorkSafe under HSWA, adventure activity operators must also notify WorkSafe of any injury sustained or illness acquired by a person in connection with an adventure activity that requires, or would usually require, the person to have medical treatment within 48 hours of the injury being sustained or the illness being acquired.

You must use your judgement to determine whether an injury or illness would usually require medical treatment within 48 hours.

See the link to the regulation below:

Regulation 19B Declaration of notifiable injury or illness(external link)

How to report notifiable events to WorkSafe

Go to Notify WorkSafe to follow our online notification system(external link)

Requirement to keep records

Under section 57(external link) of HSWA, PCBUs must keep a record of each notifiable event for at least 5 years from the date on which notice of the event is given to WorkSafe.

Other kinds of notifications

Notifiable work

Note that notifiable events are different from the requirement for PCBUs to notify WorkSafe of particular hazardous work. For more information on notifiable work refer to the link below to see if any activities you are undertaking in the workplace need to be notified to WorkSafe.

Particular hazardous work (notifiable works)