European Profile Company Limited

Court Summary - at a glance

Date of offence:
14 May 2014
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Final decision date:
 
Fine imposed:
$24,375

Safety lessons learned:
  • Ensure guards are fitted to a thicknesser machine to reduce the risk of the operator coming into contact with the moving parts of the machine.
  • Ensure employees are adequately trained in the operation of a thicknesser machine.

 

Defendant name:
European Profile Company Limited
 
Industry:
Manufacturing
 
Date of offence:
14 May 2014
 
Facts in brief:
The defendant company’s principal business is the importation of extrusion and hardware from Europe and the manufacture of joinery.

The victim was employed by the defendant on 10 April 2014 as a 'fabricator/installer', working in the defendant’s workshop. One of his tasks included preparing wooden joinery by cutting beading to size in the thicknesser machine.

On the day of the incident the victim was asked to cut down some wood beading to the required size using a power saw. When the victim processed the final piece, he noticed it looked harder and darker than the others, had different dust and smell and was likely to be 'hard wood'. The piece was approximately 30mm thick. The piece jammed in the thicknesser.

The victim pushed it from the front and it moved but got stuck again. The victim did not turn off the machine, but went to the outfeed end and attempted to pull the piece from the other side with his right hand.

The victim’s left hand slipped along the work platform alongside the jammed length of timber and into the revolving blades of the thicknesser.

The victim sustained four finger amputations on his left hand.
 
Offence section:
Section 6 and section 50(1)(a) of the Health and Safety in Employment Act
 
Date charged:

Court:
Hutt Valley - District Court
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Final decision date:
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Fine imposed:
$24,375
 
Maximum fine available:
$250,000
 
Reparation:
$17,500