ISO 45001 delayed

Previously expected in October 2016, the ISO 45001 release will be delayed, as the first draft of the standard was disapproved.

ISO 45001 will replace OHSAS 18001 as the internationally acknowledged standard for Occupational Health and Safety management systems. The participating members of the ISO committee did not approve the first Draft International Standard (DIS), causing a delay in its release.

Some of the concerns of the member bodies disapproving of the DIS version were related to the following issues:

  • The changes to the texts that were done during the ISO editing process.
  • How the memorandum of understanding between ISO and ILO  and the ILS (International Labour Standards on Occupational Safety and Health) was taken into account in the DIS ISO 45001.
  • The discussion and unclearness as to how ISO 45001 can require compliance to legal and other requirements under the ISO general rules.
  • Discussions around the definition of workers and to what extent other persons are covered by the Occupational Health and Safety management system.

Next steps 

Members of the ISO 45001 working group met Canada on June 6-10 to discuss the 3000 comments that were made to the first DIS version. Representatives from DNV GL participated at the meeting on behalf of the IIOC (Independent International Organization for Certification). The official communication after the meeting concludes that an approved standard can be released in June 2017 at the earliest. These are the main conclusions from the meeting:

  • The ISO/PC 283, who is in charge of the standard development of ISO 45001, will receive a text for the 2nd DIS of ISO 45001 from the working group. ISO will then review and edit the text before making it available to its member national standards bodies for translation by mid-November.
  • The results of a 2nd DIS ballot will be ready for review by the ISO/PC 283 in late April or early May 2017.
  • If the 2nd DIS is approved and the PC allows avoiding the FDIS stage, the new ISO 45001 can be released in June 2017, which is within ISO’s deadline.

“It is still a bit uncertain when ISO 45001 will be ready for release, but the aim for June 2017 seems realistic at this point. We will follow the next developments closely and keep our OHSAS 18001 customers up to date on relevant information on the matter. Our main focus is to ensure good and accurate information and ensure a smooth migration from OHSAS 18001 to ISO 45001 for our customers when the standard is released,” says Patrick Smink, Global Service Responsible for Occupational Health and Safety management systems in DNV GL - Business Assurance.