ZV Category 1 Animal Facility Induction Form

This induction is in three parts:

  1. ZV obligations with regard to the law.
  2. Your obligations with regard to the law.
  3. The facility & its safety rules/systems

Section 1.

Zoos Victoria has a mandatory duty of care under the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 to ensure, that:

  • The health, safety and welfare of employees and other people at work;
  • Protect the public from the health and safety risks of business activities;

Zoos Victoria is committed and focussed on ensuring all persons who enter a Zoos Victoria site go home safe and well every day.

A Category 1 (CAT 1) Animal is defined as able to cause human fatality and many require firearm intervention to respond to emergencies (20 species in ZV).  Melbourne Zoo (MZ) and Werribee Open Range Zoo (WORZ) maintains 16 facilities housing CAT1 animals.  The purpose of this induction is to ensure all persons who enter a Zoos Victoria site go home safe and well everyday by providing relevant guidelines for working in a Category 1 Animal Facility. 

Under no circumstances should any person enter a Category 1 facility intending to work, without having completed an induction to the facility by a member of the precinct.


Section 2

You have an obligation to take reasonable care of your own health and safety as well as the health and safety of other persons that maybe affected by something you may or may not do. Duty of care as stated in the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004.

Zoos Victoria encourage you to speak up if you see or feel that something is unsafe. If after this induction, you have any questions or concerns please be sure to raise them with a Zoos Victoria team member.


Section 3

Due to the physiology and natural behaviour of Category 1 Animals, a loss in segregation between an animal and person may result in fatal consequences. Each facility is unique and contains its own associated hazards, therefore it is vital that you follow all instructions from the keeper in charge (Keeper A) of the Category 1 Facility and adhere to the requirements within this induction. Both Keeper A and Keeper B shall carry a two-way radio whilst working within a Category 1 facility, as a mandatory component of PPE.

All individuals working in a CAT1 facility shall adhere to all requirements including but not limited to the following:

  • Follow the instruction of Keeper A and Keeper B whilst in the CAT 1 facility
  • Never enter a CAT1 facility without authorisation from Keeper A working the facility
  • Communicate with Keeper A, when leaving the facility
  • The ‘yellow line’ indicates a safe distance from the Category 1 Animal (including animal reach distance). All individuals are to remain behind the designated yellow line(s), unless clearance given from Keeper A or Keeper B
  • Do not operate any critical equipment (slide/doors/gates) an animal has access to, unless specifically asked to by Keeper A or Keeper B
  • Do not attempt to touch or interact with any animal (unless you are a trained Keeper A or Keeper B deemed to be competent to work and train the animal(s) within that facility)
  • Any individual bringing in any equipment/tools/personal items is responsible to ensure its removal when exiting the facility


Zoos Victoria Standard Terms

Common language is a key to managing risks well. The terms and meanings listed below are common terms used by keepers across Zoos Victoria.

  • Air Lock = double gate or door system to enable secure entry to or exit from enclosure.
  • Animal Area = where animals are intended to be kept or have access to or can reach that people enter from time to time; (e.g. dens)
  • Animal Interlocking System (AIS) = automatic, safety rated locking mechanisms on all doors, gates and slides leading into or between animal areas
  • Animal Locks = locks on access points into or inside animal areas
  • Back of house = all areas within the facility not including exhibit/display
  • Category 1 (CAT1) Animal = able to cause a human fatality and may require firearm intervention to respond to emergencies (20 species in ZV).
  • Cat 1 Facility = whole house, pens, dens, yards, air locks, races, exhibit, kitchen, stores, office (if applicable) etc.
  • Containment measures = risk controls that can be applied in the short term to reduce risk of harm
  • Countermeasures = medium-long term measures that comprehensively address the identified risks/’angry clouds’; these are usually Level 1 or Level 2 controls supported by robust management systems (procedures, protocols, training etc.)
  • Dialogue = two-way conversation with scripted words said out loud
  • Doors = openings designed primarily for people to access parts of the facility
  • Entry Work = work done inside an animal area
  • Exhibit Entry = entry to an animal display enclosure
  • External Facility Locks = locks on access points to keeper areas
  • Feed Chute = Food delivery mechanism
  • Gates = People, animal or vehicle access doors and gates.
  • Isolation Area = location where animal is fed or isolated for husbandry/transportation purposes
  • Keeper Area = inside facility, no animals
  • Locked = access point is closed and padlock is locked with the key removed (this applies to standard locks and lockout locks)
  • LOTO = lock out, tag out system
  • Multi-Area Entry = entry to a secured area comprising of multiple open access points between the enclosures
  • Non-Entry Work = work that is done from outside animal areas
  • Positive Visual Account = visual identification of individual animal’s location
  • Race = animal movement corridor
  • Secured = gate, door or slide is closed, pinned (where present) and locked = ALL required locking parts are in place
  • Secured Vacant Animal Area = animal Area that has been secured from animal entry
  • Single Exhibit Entry = entry to a single secured animal area (i.e. no open access points other than entry door/gate)
  • Slides = slides, openings etc. primarily designed for animal movement (may be vertical or horizontal mechanism)
  • Slide Locking Mechanism = the locking device to keep slides in position (e.g. handle)
  • Unsecured = not ALL required locking parts are in place