Three60 Consult Logo

Hefty Fines Forklift Accident

Posted on: Aug 20, 2014

 19 August 2014

Three companies have been fined a total of almost $120,000 and ordered to pay combined reparation of $20,000 after a woman was struck by a reversing forklift at a kiwifruit pack house at Mount Maunganui.

Erica Machado, 33, suffered a fractured ankle which required pins inserted in it as well as a large laceration to one of her legs in the May 2013 accident. She had been straightening rows of boxes in an area of the pack house designated for the assembly of kiwifruit packaging trays when the forklift backed into her.

The company that employed her, LRK Trays Limited, the pack house operator and employer of the forklift driver Mount Pack and Cool Limited, and the company that supplied the kiwifruit trays, Orora Packaging Limited (formerly Amcor Packaging (NZ) Ltd) were all convicted under the Health and Safety in Employment Act of failing to take all practicable steps to ensure that she was not harmed at work.

The Tauranga District Court yesterday fined the companies $39,375 each. The $20,000 in reparation was split evenly between the three companies.

WorkSafe New Zealand’s chief investigator Keith Stewart says the companies failed to put in place proper workplace rules to manage the risk posed by forklifts to workers on foot.

“This incident could have been easily avoided if a barrier had been put in place to prevent the forklift from moving into the tray makers’ area.

“Without proper barriers or some form of isolation an accident such as this was sadly predictable. All three companies should have done more to ensure that forklifts were kept well away from the area Ms Machado was working in,” says Keith Stewart.

NOTE: Orora Packaging had a contract with LRK Trays for the labour to assemble the kiwifruit trays using Orora machines at the Mount Pack and Cool Limited pack house.

Source: WorkSafe NZ

Disclaimer

This article, and any information contained on our website is necessarily brief and general in nature, and should not be substituted for professional advice. You should always seek professional advice before taking any action in relation to the matters addressed.

Disclaimer

This article, and any information contained on our website is necessarily brief and general in nature, and should not be substituted for professional advice. You should always seek professional advice before taking any action in relation to the matters addressed.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Christmas is coming…

Christmas is coming…

Once Labour Day has been [yes, believe it or not it’s this coming Monday], the next public holidays are at Christmas and New Year. It always feels like employers have to put a bit more thought into Christmas and New Year because: there are four public holidays; this is a time that many businesses have their annual closedown period; many employees take their annual leave; some employees don’t have enough leave to cover this period; some employment agreements have special rates for these public holidays; and, let’s face it, it is a busy busy busy time. In the next few weeks, my colleague, Tasneem Begum, and I will be offering a free webinar for those employers who want a bit more information around those tricky calculations for leave at this time of the year. We will also be able to answer the questions you have and the challenges you face with leave during the Christmas/New Year period. You are not alone with the questions you have – Questions we are often asked at this time of the year are about employing staff to cover the busy Christmas period

Read More
What the heck is going on with pay?

What the heck is going on with pay?

While we are conscious of the impact that inflation is having on wage and salary conversations, there are four other levers that have been, and are being, used to bring about fundamental change and significant uplift to pay in New Zealand. The Government is using these levers to drive increases in pay at various levels in ways that we may not be conscious of. However, when brought together as a single thread, they are having a big impact.

Read More
To Mediate or not to Mediate

To Mediate or not to Mediate

To mediate or not to mediate – that is the question… While William Shakespeare put into verse Hamlet’s soliloquy in endless agonising verse about dire choices with absolutely no chance of a happy ending – it is not so with mediation. Change the name, and the thinking around the word mediation. Let’s start thinking about it and calling it “an opportunity”. That’s really what mediation is; an opportunity for parties in conflict to come together and sort out their problem(s). It doesn’t have to be the only option, but it should be considered as a first step.

Read More
PREV NEXT