A Deniliquin-based tyre and wheel fitting company has been fined $300,000 after a 49 year old worker was killed when changing a wheel on an industrial vehicle.
Minister for Better Regulation Matt Kean said Haconby Pty Ltd was sentenced in the Sydney District Court for failing to ensure correct safety procedures were followed, and failing to properly train its staff to carry out the work.
Employees from another local business were on site, and tried to help a Haconby worker remove the wheels from a commercial reach stacker. A wheel blew off in the process and killed one of the workers from the other business.
“Workplace fatalities have a devastating impact on everyone involved,” Mr Kean said.
“This poor man was just trying to help, but tragically lost his life in the process.
“Employers can forget that safety procedures may be very different for similar machines. Just because your staff have been trained to handle one machine, doesn’t mean those safety procedures are the same for another.”
The court heard that the workers attempted to use a sledgehammer to remove the front wheels after other methods to remove them had failed.
“I want to remind everyone that workplace safety should be a top priority,” Mr Kean said.
“Always assess the risks around you before starting a job, and always keep an eye out for your fellow employees’ safety.”
A reach stacker is an industrial vehicle used to transport shipping storage containers in small terminals or medium-sized ports.
In 2017/18 SafeWork NSW successfully prosecuted 59 businesses for failing to protect the health and safety of its workers.
Haconby has the right to lodge an appeal.