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Prosecution Details

Defendant Rino Del Borrello and Marina Del Borrello
Trading Name Modern Wrought Iron
Regulation 4.37(1)(f)
Offence Date Wednesday, 13 October 2004
Description of Breach(es)

Being the employers at a workplace, failed to ensure that every dangerous part of a fixed powered plant, namely the Metal Twisting Machine, was as far as practicable securely fenced or guarded in accordance with regulation 4.29; contrary to regulation 4.37(1)(f) of the Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996 made under the Occupational Safety and Health Act 1984.

Background Details

The accused carried on a business that manufactured wrought iron products for both commercial and domestic use. The accused employed approximately 5 employees who worked at their workplace in Malaga. The workplace included a large building containing an administration area at the front and a metal workshop at the back.

Within the metal workshop area the accused had an electrically powered Metal Twisting Machine that was used to manufacture metal rings and twist bars of metal into a liquorice form. To form a metal ring the machine operator turned the chuck adjustment wheel to adjust the position of the holding chuck to align a bracket located above the surface of the forming tool. One end of a bar of metal was then secured under the bracket. The forming tool was then set in motion by turning on the machine.

While the machine was running the operator would apply physical pressure to the bar of metal to bend it around the outer curved surface of the rotating forming tool. The forming tool of the machine was not guarded at all.

On 13 October 2004 a first year apprentice who was employed by the accused was using the Metal Twisting Machine to make a metal ring, when the glove that he was wearing on his left hand caught between the bar of metal he was bending, and the curved outer surface of the forming tool. He could not free the glove or get his hand out of the glove. He tried to stop the Metal Twisting Machine but could not reach the control. The rotating forming tool then pulled the glove with his hand in it around the forming tool. Another employee who heard him call out for help turned off the machine.

The apprentice suffered numerous fractures to the bones of his left arm and nerve damage to his elbow.

Subsequent to the offence the accused placed a guard over the Metal Twisting Machine so that the moving parts of the machine are now guarded.

The accused pleaded guilty.

Outcome Summary Convicted
Conviction Date 23 Feb 2006
Court Magistrates Court of Western Australia - Midland
Fine $2500 ($1250 for each accused)
Costs $1016.90 ($508.45 for each accused)