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Friday 19th March 2021

Mar 19th 2021

Friday 19th March 2021

Fine issued after double leg amputation. 

SafeWork SA successfully prosecuted a hay processing and exporting company after a 2017 incident in which a workers’ legs were amputated in a hay press.

The worker was attempting to dislodge a metal bale from behind a guardrail and fell approximately 3 metres onto a table below. The worker’s weight on the metal bale activated the hay press’s cutting blade, which amputated both of the worker’s legs below the knees.

The company pleaded guilty in the South Australia Employment Tribunal (SAET) for breaches of their duties under section 32 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 (SA). A fine of $350,000 was imposed.

SafeWork SA identified that the incident could have been avoided if a risk assessment of the plant had been completed and adequate engineering controls were in place, such as guarding and sensors.

SafeWork SA Executive Director Martyn Campbell stated that ‘This incident should serve as a reminder to all employers of their duty to ensure adequate controls and safe systems are in place, which are the basic fundamentals to work health and safety’.

Read the full article on the SafeWork SA website.


Conviction and fine over untreated sewage offence. 

In October 2018, almost 3 million litres of untreated sewage was released into Toongabbie Creek and Parramatta River by Sydney Water.

The sewage spill occurred when the inner wall of Sydney Water’s Northmead Pumping Station collapsed, damaging and ultimately disabling the pumps.

Sydney Water pleaded guilty to two offences of water pollution and was convicted by the Land and Environment Court and ordered to pay $175,500 to the City of Parramatta Council for multiple environmental projects.

Since 2018 the EPA has prosecuted Sydney Water for nine offences against the environmental protection legislation, including the above offence.

View the media release on the  EPA NSW website


Corroded edge protection leads to death. 

WorkSafe New Zealand has released a reminder that edge protection must be inspected, maintained and routinely replaced to ensure it can effectively prevent fall from heights.

The reminder has come after a January 2019 incident where a worker fell three metres to the ground from the top deck of a trailer.

The worker had leased the trailer to transport cars and was strapping the vehicle down when he leaned against the wired edge protection that then snapped. He suffered brain injuries as a result of the fall and later died in hospital.

An investigation by WorkSafe NZ found the wire ropes on the trailers top deck were severely corroded.

The business had recorded four previous falls from heights on their trailers between 2017 and 2018.

In February 2021, the business was ordered to pay a fine of $279,000 and reparation of $90,000 to the victim’s family.

The full article can be found on the  WorkSafe NZ website

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