14 min read


Last updated December 2022

This chapter explains how health and safety legislation is enforced through inspections and investigations, and how to meet your obligations to inspectors who carry out the enforcement function for health and safety regulators.

How is health and safety legislation enforced?

Health and safety regulators in each jurisdiction enforce health and safety legislation.

The regulators are listed in the following table:

Jurisdiction Regulator
Cth Comcare
ACT WorkSafe ACT
NSW SafeWork NSW
NT NT WorkSafe
Qld Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (supported by the Office of the Work Health and Safety Prosecutor)
SA SafeWork SA
Tas WorkSafe Tasmania
Vic WorkSafe Victoria
WA WorkSafe WA

Health and safety regulators appoint inspectors to carry out their enforcement functions.

Definition: Health and Safety Inspector

A health and safety inspector is a government official appointed by the health and safety regulator to inspect workplaces. Inspectors enforce health and safety legislation, and investigate and prosecute suspected breaches of the legislation.

Inspectors have extensive powers to ensure you comply with your obligations under health and safety legislation, and to take enforcement action against you if you breach them.