Charges after airport worker breaks back in four metre fall

WorkSafe has charged a metal fabrication subcontractor after a worker was seriously injured in a fall at Melbourne Airport in December 2021.


Karagata Aust Pty Ltd faces three charges under section 21(1) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act for failing to provide and maintain a safe workplace.

The worker was installing a walkway to go underneath a new baggage conveyor on the mezzanine level of Terminal 2 when he fell through a ceiling panel to the floor approximately four metres below. He was hospitalised with spinal, pelvic and rib fractures as a result of the incident.

It is alleged the company breached regulation 327 of the OHS Regulations by failing to prepare a Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS) for high risk construction work and/or by failing to ensure the work was performed in accordance with a SWMS.

WorkSafe also alleges Karagata breached section 21(2)(e) of the OHS Act by failing to provide employees with necessary information, instruction and training on fall protection measures.

It is further alleged the company breached regulation 44 of the OHS Regulations by failing to eliminate or reduce the risk of a fall with the use of a fall arrest system.

The matter is listed for filing hearing at Melbourne Magistrates' Court on 27 October 2023.