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Prosecution Details

Defendant Fero Industries Pty Ltd
Trading Name Not applicable
Section 19(1) and 19(6)
Regulation Not applicable
Offence Date Wednesday, 22 September 1999
Description of Breach(es)

Being an employer, failed to provide and maintain, so far as was practicable, a working environment in which its employees were not exposed to hazards.

Background Details

On 22 September 1999 a WorkSafe inspector was at the defendant's premises when he observed a forklift being driven with an empty 200 litre drum suspended from the forklift tines. The forklift operator was a subcontract employee. He did not hold a certificate of competency in forklift operation and he had not received any training or instruction in relation to forklift operation from the defendant.

The WorkSafe inspector then observed a different operator drive a forklift towards a pile of six metre long steel beams. The operator drove onto a wooden glut. As a result the left hand front wheel of the forklift was lifted off the ground immobilising it. The operator continued to rev the engine in an attempt to drive the forklift off the glut. The forklift operator was an employee of the defendant. He did not hold a certificate of competency in forklift operation nor had he received any training or instruction in relation to forklift operation from the defendant.

It was also observed that the forklifts were driven at excessive speeds around the premises. There were no speed signs posted on the defendant's premises and there was no policy in relation to speed limits. The WorkSafe inspector stopped an operator he considered was driving at excessive speeds and he observed that the forklift was not fitted with a seatbelt. Where forklifts used at the defendant's premises were fitted with a seatbelt the defendant did not enforce the wearing of seat belts.

The defendant pleaded guilty. The penalty was imposed under section 19(6).

The Magistrate accepted that forklifts can be dangerous and, therefore, there is a need to ensure that those who operate them are trained. The Magistrate referred to a number of mitigating factors and was of the view that a more modest penalty was appropriate in the circumstances.




Lead Image
Outcome Summary

convicted

Conviction Date 29 May 2001
Court Perth Court of Petty Sessions
Fine $1,000
Costs $277.70
Charge Number 24185/01