In light of the ongoing catastrophic bushfires in NSW and other parts of the country, a WHS regulator has urged employers to revise their emergency plans to ensure they comply with safety laws and protect workers. Meanwhile, a company director has been prosecuted after two workers were seriously injured within two hours on a non-commissioned machine.
Employers must implement and enforce safe systems of work for seemingly straightforward tasks like stacking materials, a fatality and a $400,000 fine have shown. Meanwhile, regulators have issued alerts after workers were killed in telehandler and hoist incidents.
Two companies and an engineer who allegedly failed to ensure a worksite was supervised in his absence have been charged over a fatal crane incident, while an employer has been fined $110,000 after a worker was nearly struck by a falling object - weighing two tonnes.
A superior court has ruled out a worker's difficult and demanding role and ongoing issues with a supervisor's management style as causes of her debilitating psychological injury, but upheld her appeal against an assault finding.
A major employer has committed $364,200 to developing an industry safety standard after a worker's fingers were degloved in a tag-out incident. Meanwhile, an employer has been fined for safety breaches secretly filmed by an employee.
Employers that don't do enough to protect the health and safety of either workers or the community, or to address the risks posed by external sources like bushfires, have been put on notice, after Hazelwood Power Corporation Pty Ltd was found guilty of 10 OHS charges.
An employer has been fined $650,000 after a worker died in a 12-metre fall from a platform that was completely unsuitable for purpose, making the fall almost inevitable. Meanwhile, a head contractor has entered a $175,000 safety undertaking after a worker was impaled on an obviously hazardous bar.
Three employers have been fined a total of more than $300,000 for height and access breaches, including in one case that shows a simple slip can have a devastating impact on workers and expose duty holders to prosecution.
A worker who claims she was severely psychologically impaired by being bullied and harassed after making a statement to a taskforce investigating s-xist behaviour in her workplace, has been allowed to sue her former employer for damages.