Prosecutions

What have you got in Place?

Maximum fines can be reduced by being able to demonstrate that you have safety systems in place.

22 October 2013
Victoria
A company was fined $60,000 plus costs after pleading guilty to failing to provide a system of work that was, so far as was reasonably practicable, safe and without risks to health.  An employee was operating a materials handler when it struck high voltage overhead power lines.  No one was injured.

10 October 2013
South Australia
Company fined $51,000 plus legal fees after an employee’s left index finger was partially amputated by machinery.  The employee was attempting to reposition a diverter bar mounted over a conveyor belt when his hand became caught between the bar and the moving belt, amputating the top of his left index finger.

The company faced a maximum penalty of $600,000.

7 October 2013
Victoria
A company was fined $20,000 and ordered to pay costs after a tree fell onto an overhead powerline.  An employee was felling trees close to powerlines and the court found that the company failed to direct its employee to follow industry standard safety procedures.  No persons were injured, however there was risk of death or serious injury.

26 September 2013
Victoria
A company was fined $10,000 plus costs for failing to provide necessary information, instruction, training and supervision to employees, to enable the employees to perform their work in a way that was safe and without risks to health.  A worker was injured when a winch leapt forward, striking the employee in the leg.  The employee suffered a blocked artery in his leg and was in hospital for 2 weeks.

24 September 2013
New South Wales
Company fined $120,000 after a worker sustained crush injuries to his right foot resulting in partial amputation when his foot was caught in an unguarded chain and sprocket drive of a conveyor unit.

The Company faced a maximum penalty of $825,000.

17 September 2013
South Australia
Company fined $66,000 plus legal fees after an employee was crushed between a roller door and a forklift back rail while manually closing a roller door.  A roller door at the company’s premises had been intermittently malfunctioning for some time and was instead operated manually. This was achieved by lifting an employee on the tines of a forklift to a height that enabled the roller door to be manually pulled down – usually to a height up to 1.5 metres.  The employer was aware of this practice and did not stop the use of the forklift for this purpose.

17 September 2013
South Australia
Company convicted and fined $38,500 plus legal fees after an employee’s hand was injured in a tablet press that was not adequately guarded.  The press was inadequately guarded, allowing the employee’s right hand to become trapped, resulting in crush injuries to his index finger and amputation of his middle finger.

17 September 2013
Victoria
A company was fined $30,000 plus costs after a worker was injured when struck by a forklift, trapping the worker between the forklift and a storage unit.  It was found that the company did not have adequate traffic management systems to separate mobile plant from pedestrians, and lacked training and supervision with regard to traffic management. Employees would routinely stand in close proximity to the operating forklift when stocktaking.

11 September 2013
Victoria
A company was fined $25,000 plus costs after an employee was injured when struck by a forklift.  The workplace did not have adequate traffic management in relation to separation of mobile plant and pedestrians.

29 August 2013
South Australia
Company fined $28,000 plus legal fees after an employee’s right thumb was crushed by a crimping machine where the guard was not in place.  The employee was operating a machine where the guard had been moved away from crimping jaws for better visual access. The tip of the employee’s thumb became caught between the jaws.

The Company faced a maximum penalty of $300,000.

28 August 2013
New South Wales
Company convicted and fined $40,000 after a worker sustained serious injuries when struck by an evaporator unit while detaching the unit from a ceiling.  The company Director was also convicted and fined $4,000.
The Company faced a maximum penalty of $550,000.
The company Director faced a maximum penalty of $55,000

1 July 2013
Australian Capital Territory
The two owners and partners of a business were each fined $24,000 after cans of butane lighter gas, which were used to fuel a handheld torch, were stored on an open shelf directly beneath an oven. On the night of the incident the cans exploded and engulfed a worker in flames. He sustained significant injuries and another worker received minor injuries.
The two individuals who were prosecuted each faced a maximum penalty of $ 165,000 and/or 3 years imprisonment.