3.13 Health and safety

Protecting the health or safety of persons who operate or work on or use services supplied by means of a telecommunications network or a facility is one of the four ACMA’s Heads of Power under s376 of the Telecommunications Act 1997.

Requirements for health and safety as applied under the Heads of Power to CE are specified in the following Standards:

  • AS/NZS 60950.1 Information technology equipment — Safety — Part 1: General requirements.
  • AS/NZS 4117 Surge Protective Devices for Telecommunications Applications.
  • AS/ACIF S004 Voice frequency performance requirements for Customer Equipment  and AS/CA S042.1 Requirements for connection to an air interface of a Telecommunications Network — Part 1: General (specifically for acoustic safety).
  • AS/CA S008 Requirements for customer cabling products (products within this category are not subject to AS/NZS 60950.1 except for those parts of AS/NZS 60950.1 referenced by S008).
  • AS/ACIF S009 Installation requirements for customer cabling (Wiring rules).

The IEC 62368-1 ed1.0 Audio/video, information and communication technology equipment - Part 1: Safety requirements Standard was published in 2010. The scope of this Standard covers the scopes of the two IEC standards that it is intended to replace in 2015, IEC 60065 Audio, Video and Similar Electronic Apparatus – Safety Requirements and IEC 60950-1. IEC 62368-1 is technology-neutral and performance-based, rather than based on prescribed constructions like the two standards it is replacing. It employs a new form of safety testing, Hazard Based Safety Engineering (HBSE), which evaluates hazards that can be transferred to end users and how technology products safeguard against these potential dangers.

IEC 62368-1 will only become mandatory in Australia when called up under the ACMA’s Telecommunications Labelling Notice. It will eventually address requirements for acoustic safety which are currently under development within the IEC. Until such time the applicable Australian acoustic safety requirements will remain in AS/ACIF S004 and AS/CA S042.1.

Optical fibre safety is currently addressed by the above Standards under Australian telecommunications legislation. In addition, the non-mandatory Standard, AS/NZS 2967 Optical fibre communication systems safety, addresses the following optical fibre equipment considerations:

  • handling, use and disposal of optical fibre materials and associated chemicals
  • testing and use of laser light sources
  • use, installation and operation of an optical fibre cabling system (OFCS)
  • laser warning labels