1 min read

Guilty plea after workers injured in telehandler cage accident

A company has been convicted and fined $30,000 over an incident where two workers inside a man cage were seriously injured when it detached and fell from a telehandler as it lifted.

Hewitt Cattle Australia Pty Ltd pleaded guilty to one breach of Section 32 of the Work Health and Safety (National Uniform Legislation) Act 2011 for not ensuring the health and safety of workers they engaged.

Although the company had a work health and safety handbook outlining safe working methods and requirements for contractors to carry out high-risk work, it had not undertaken a risk assessment in this instance, or verified the competencies of the workers involved.

“Providing an operational procedure manual is only part of the duty, as duty-holders must also ensure workers are trained and competent in the safe use of plant,” NT Work Health and Safety Regulator Bill Esteves said.

“Most importantly, plant should never be operated without a risk assessment to determine whether further controls are necessary to eliminate hazards from the workplace.

“The Northern Territory’s How to manage work health and safety risks code of practice details hierarchy of control measures that businesses and workers should use when managing the health and safety risks at their workplace.

“If a hazard cannot be eliminated, as many of the risks associated with the hazard should be minimised through a number of control measures combined, which together provide the highest level of protection possible, especially if the risk has the potential to cause serious injury or death.”

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