John Austin Limited

Court Summary - at a glance

Date of offence:
18 February 2015
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Final decision date:
 
Fine imposed:
$36,750

Safety lessons learned:
  1. Ensure that all relevant staff were aware of the hazard of an inadequately secured raised truck hoist and the means of controlling it;
  2. Ensure effective safe operating procedures are implemented for work involving a raised truck hoist to ensure:
  3. wherever practicable, a laden raised hoist is to be emptied before work was undertaken underneath it;
  4. work is only undertaken underneath a raised truck hoist if it is adequately supported so that the hoist could not drop or lower expectantly while an employee was under it; and
  5. Ensure specialist training is provided to employee mechanics on repairing truck hydraulic systems.

Defendant name:
John Austin Limited
 
Industry:
Agriculture
 
Date of offence:
18 February 2015
 
Facts in brief:
The Defendant company has a fleet of 80 heavy agricultural vehicles including trucks, tractors, harvesters, trailers and support vehicles. The Defendant has a workshop in which manufacturing, repair and maintenance work is carried out for the fleet.

On the day of the incident, the victim, a mechanic employed by the Defendant, and another employee were at a farm fixing a hydraulic hoist on a truck which was fully laden with maize. The hoist had stopped halfway up and the truck was not able to be moved to the workshop. The victim chocked the rear hinge of the hoist with a length of hardwood railway sleeper due to having nothing else available. The victim crawled under the hoist to access the hydraulic valves and hoses. One of the valves burst causing the hoist to fall down, crushing the wooden chock. The victim attempted to get out but was caught sideways through the hip and area between his pelvis and ribcage.

The victim suffered two breaks to his pelvis as well as deep bruising and nerve damage.
 
Offence section:
Sections 6 and 50(1)(a) of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992
 
Date charged:

Court:
Te Awamutu - District Court
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Final decision date:
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Fine imposed:
$36,750
 
Maximum fine available:
$250,000
 
Reparation:
$65,554