Workers are set to be safer on the job with new national workplace safety laws being introduced in 2012.

Work Safety Australia week kicked off with Queensland State of Origin Coach Mal Meninga telling how his father died after a workplace accident.

Denica Gorman reports.

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Workplace experts discussed changes in health and safety laws proposed by the state and federal governments.

Parliamentary Secretary for Industrial Relations Simon Finn addressed delegates on changes that were nationally agreed upon which will be trialed from November.

Simon Finn, Qld IR Parliamentary Secretary: “One of the things they do do is implement much stronger penalities for employers who don’t have a safe work place.”

Currently, national businesses must abide by different OH&S laws for each Australian state their company runs from.

Each year thirty thousand Queensland workers are seriously injured and one hundred are killed as a result of workplace accidents.

The theme of Safe Work Australia Week this year is Zero Harm.

State of origin coach and safety Ambassador Mal Meninga says applying the Zero Harm policy in his line of work is difficult.

Mal Meninga, Safety Ambassador: “Even in training it’s very aggressive and you’ve gotta be fairly intense in your preparation so minimising risk is a really crucial factor.”

Motivational speaker and former AFL player and coach Gavan Mcguane lost most of his sight after tripping over a keg of alkaline and gas.

Gavan McGuane, Motivational Speaker: “The bottom line is, If I’d have taken that extra little bit of time and had the safety requirements there I wouldn’t end up being looking like this. And I mean I still can’t do what I used to do seventeen years ago.”

Businesses are being rewarded with thousand dollar bonuses for improving their work practices.

Denica Gorman, QUT News.