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Details of successful prosecution against E218233 - Company 2

Note: Appeal decision published 2 March 2018

Incident description

The defendant company held duties under s.25 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011.

The defendant company supplied various items of plant to an associated defendant’s banana farming operations. The items of plant included a tractor, that was fitted with a roll over protective structure (ROPS) but no seatbelt. On 4 September 2015, a seasonal 'backpacker worker' from the Netherlands may have driven a tractor without due care and attention. It veered off a farm road and into a drainage ditch. Because of the absent seatbelt, he was thrown from the tractor and sustained minor injuries. The tractor did not roll over.

Court result

On 17 August 2017, the defendant pleaded guilty in the Tully Magistrates Court to breaching s.33 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, having failed to meet its work health and safety duties and was sentenced.

The Magistrate fined the defendant $2,000 and ordered costs totaling $89.40. No conviction was recorded.

The complainant appealed and was successful on the ground that the sentence was inadequate.

The appeal decision can be accessed via the following link:

http://classic.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/qld/QDC/2018/20.html

Considerations for prevention

(commentary under this heading is not part of the court's decision)

When working in the agriculture industry where there is exposure to risks from plant not suitably fitted with operator protective devices, duty holders should apply a risk management approach to ensure the selection of suitable control measures.

Risk management involves identifying the hazards, evaluating the consequences and likelihood of harm that may result from the hazard, deciding and implementing control measures to prevent or minimise the level of the risk from the hazard and monitoring the effectiveness of the control measures to ensure they remain working correctly.

When deciding and implementing control measures associated with the risk of injury, obligation holders should consider:

Details

Industry:
Agriculture, forestry and fishing
Defendant:
Date of offence:
04/09/2015
Injury:
Nil
Court
Tully Magistrates Court
Magistrate:
Magistrate Cathy McLennan
Legislation:
s.32 of the duty under s.19 Work Health and Safety Act 2011
Decision date:
02/03/2018
Penalty:
$35,000
Maximum Penalty:
$50,000
Conviction recorded:
No
CIS event number:
E218233
Last updated
02 July 2018

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