The number of serious workplace falls and related prosecutions is reaching epidemic proportions and will force courts to increase penalty levels, a judge has warned in handing a PCBU a pre-discount fine of $240,000.
The employer of two supervisors who were convicted for recklessly attacking an apprentice, has been convicted and fined for failing to address bullying and harassment in its otherwise extensive WHS policies.
Three employers including a repeat offender have been charged with safety breaches, after the deaths of a confined space worker and a backpacker. The latest development in the backpacker's case coincides with two Federal Court rulings on the employment status of workers at the site where she was killed.
In convicting an individual for WHS breaches, a judge has reminded duty holders of an often-overlooked strategy for eliminating or minimising the risks associated with a task: not performing the task at all until all safety issues or breaches have been resolved.
Employers have been warned there are no excuses for allowing workers to risk their safety by clearing machinery that is not switched off, after a company was convicted over a young worker's injuries. Meanwhile, the employer of a worker killed by a runaway vehicle could be fined up to $9 million, after being charged with WHS offences.
A workplace "exclusion zone" was established in a way that "invited" rather than deterred access to the area, and contributed to a work experience student's life-changing injuries, a court has found in convicting and fining a PCBU.