Bradken Resources Limited was fined in the Melbourne County Court today after last month being found guilty by a Wangaratta County Court jury of failing to provide and maintain safe plant following a 10 day trial.
A WorkSafe investigation into the 22 July 2014 death led to the company being charged with a single breach of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
The court heard the deceased employee was operating a skid steer loader to move recently-cast heavy metal components into a cooling bin, when a 276kg metal casting crashed through the skid steer windscreen onto him, killing him.
WorkSafe told the court the weight, heat and proximity of the castings created a risk that employees operating the loader could suffer burns leading to serious injury or death.
Although there had been no prior incidents of a casting falling back onto the windscreen of a skid steer loader, the court heard Bradken knew, or ought to have known, from previous similar incidents that this could happen.
The court was told it had been reasonably practicable for Bradken to reduce that risk by using alternative machinery, such as a rock excavator, that did not put its employees as close to the castings.
WorkSafe Health and Safety Executive Director Julie Nielsen today said the incident was a tragic reminder of the catastrophic consequences that not having appropriate machinery and systems in place can have.
"Every family should expect that when their loved ones go off to work, their employer is doing their utmost to keep them safe."
"This includes making sure they are using appropriate machinery and equipment and that measures are put in place to control risks as they are identified."
"WorkSafe will not hesitate to prosecute those employers who fail to do all that is reasonably possible to protect the health and safety of their workers."
Steps to reduce machinery hazards:
- Identify all hazards associated with installing, erecting, commissioning, decommissioning, dismantling or using machinery.
- Assess the risks associated with the identified hazards.
- Eliminate or control the risks by using an alternative, isolating the hazard, engineering a control, using protective equipment, or implementing a work system that reduces the risk.
Company fined $60,000 after worker loses fingerNews
23 Mar 2012
Altered design and overloading contributed to Prahran scaffold collapseNews
23 Mar 2012
Safety issues for employers, workers and helpers in flood-hit areasNews
20 Mar 2012
Award winner to present at return to work forumNews
20 Mar 2012
Truck driver pleads guilty to WorkSafe fraudNews
16 Mar 2012
Man dies after three metre fall at HighettNews
06 Feb 2012
Help injured workers get better sooner with a free workshopNews
27 Jan 2012
Company fined over crush incidentNews
25 Jan 2012
Companies fined over farm deathNews
22 Dec 2011
Non-compliance leads to $15,000 fineNews
15 Dec 2011
Asbestos concerns raisedNews
22 Nov 2011
$50,000 fine for crush injuryNews
18 Nov 2011
Third safety prosecution in four years for Colac timber companyNews
16 Nov 2011
South Eastern employers urged to learn more about return to workNews
15 Nov 2011
Farm death and injury toll rises during harvestNews
08 Nov 2011
Work stopped at Observation WheelNews
29 Nov 2011
Costly consequences for Geelong businessesNews
04 Nov 2011
Domestic construction sites blitzNews
25 Nov 2011
Scaffold overload ends in $100,000 fineNews
02 Nov 2011
Court orders council to stage safety expoNews
24 Nov 2011