Safety and security obligations for security-sensitive explosives

Security clearances

Security clearances are required for work involving security-sensitive explosives.

The requirements apply to holders of explosives licences and permits and employees who have unsupervised access to the explosives.

Find out more about the requirements for security clearances and how to apply.

Safety and security management systems

All corporate and partnership licence holders must have a safety and security management system (SSMS) under the Explosives Regulation 2017.

However, the SSMS isn't mandatory for an individual licence or permit holder who is a sole operator working under the licence or permit.

Your SSMS must cover every activity you conduct under the licence and be based on a risk management approach. To make the SSMS effective, you must:

  1. Document it.
  2. Communicate it to all relevant people.
  3. Implement it.
  4. Enforce it.
  5. Review it regularly.

Penalties apply for non-compliance.

Security plans

All explosives licence and permit holders must have a security plan based on a risk assessment. The plan must cover all activities conducted under the licence or permit.

Your security plan should be appropriate to your circumstances. For example, a security plan for the seller of propellant powders from a shop wouldn't need the same detail as a security plan for a transporter of explosives or major explosives seller.

All security plans should be based on the following principles:

  • Keep explosives secure at all times or under an appropriate person's control (i.e. someone with an explosives security clearance who has appropriate competencies and general conduct).
  • Implement a documented chain of custody as explosives pass from one licence holder to another (or their representative).
  • Ensure that explosives are always in the possession and control of either you or your authorised representative.
  • Be able to account for explosives accurately and quickly to assist in investigations of theft, loss or stock discrepancies.

Reviewing your security plan

You must review your security plan every year, and whenever there is a change in the national counter-terrorism alert level or level of risk.

You must also review your security plan whenever you experience any of the following:

  • loss of explosives or a stock discrepancy that cannot be accounted for
  • unauthorised entry or attempted break-in to your explosives storage place
  • theft of explosives
  • explosives obtained fraudulently
  • intentional damage to one of your explosives facility
  • loss or theft of information about explosives
  • failure to deliver a shipment by the expected delivery time.

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