OHS training company fined $200k for fraud
WorkSafe Victoria has convicted and fined an occupational health and safety training provider for falsifying records.
Sunshine Magistrates’ Court heard that ATTA Quality Training Services Pty Ltd had falsified notices of assessment for students who attended forklift and basic scaffolding training courses by certifying that the students had participated in full two-day courses when they had actually finished at lunchtime on both days.
Further, its notices of assessment certified that students had completed a number of mandatory course components that had not been covered in the organisation’s training.
ATTA pleaded guilty to 14 charges under section 153(2) of the state’s Occupational Health and Safety Act for knowingly providing false information.
The company was fined $200,000 and ordered to pay $22,581 costs.
Vincent Marino, an assessor employed by the company, who was also a director at the time the offences were committed was also fined, without conviction.
Mr Marino was ordered to pay $25,000 plus $5,000 costs.
“Registered trainers have a legal responsibility and a community obligation to train workers properly and WorkSafe will not tolerate assessors or organisations who cut corners or fail to play by the rules,” WorkSafe Victoria Health and Safety Executive Director Julie Nielsen said.
The students who undertook the incomplete training have since been given the option to either “show evidence of their competency” or undergo reassessment.
“Without certified training, inexperienced and possibly incompetent workers operating machinery would pose a potentially deadly risk to themselves and all around them,” Ms Nielsen said.
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