The defendant held duties under s. 30 of the Electrical Safety Act 2002 being to ensure that his business or undertaking was conducted in a way that was electrically safe. The defendant (in partnership with his wife) owns a small laundry and dry cleaning business.
On 10 February 2015, the defendant wired up a device known as a series test lamp to the live 240 volt AC terminals of a washing machine drain solenoid to ascertain why the machine was not draining properly. An employee sustained burns to her fingers when she contacted the exposed wires and/or alligator clips connecting the lamp. After this incident, the defendant was directed not to reconnect the device to an electrical source.
On 20 May 2015, the defendant reconnected the device to a source of electricity again leaving exposed live parts, exposing workers to electrical risk.
The defendant pleaded guilty in the Southport Magistrates Court on 9 May 2016 to two offences of breaching s. 40C of the Electrical Safety Act 2002, having failed to meet his electrical safety duties, and was sentenced.
Magistrate Ron Kilner fined the defendant $5,000 and ordered professional and court costs totaling $772.80. No conviction was recorded.
In deciding penalty, the magistrate took into account the defendant had not been prosecuted previously for any electrical safety breach, cooperated with the investigation and entered an early plea of guilty.
Considerations for prevention
(commentary under this heading is not part of the court's decision)
When deciding on and implementing control measures to manage the risk of injury associated with electrical exposure, duty holders should consider:
- Electrical safety at work
- Electrical Safety Act 2002
- Electrical Safety Regulation 2013
- Work Health and Safety Act 2011
- Retail trade
- Date of offence:
- Minor electrical burns to two fingers and a thumb
- Southport Magistrates Court
- Ron Kilner
- s.40C of the Electrical Safety Act 2002
- Decision date:
- $5 000
- Maximum Penalty:
- Conviction recorded:
- CIS event number: