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Court Summary - at a glance
- Isolate the hazard of the in-running nip points of the conveyor to prevent access. Fit padlocks to the access panels and fixed guards under the conveyor to prevent access from other access panels.
- Implement an effective lock out procedure for cleaning/maintenance of the conveyor (an effective lockout procedure has subsequently been implemented)
- Induct, formally train and assess the employee on the lockout procedure to ensure that employees are able to safety perform the tasks.
The victim was employed to clear out excess snow from underneath the conveyor. The snow is cleared at the end of the shift when the facility is closed. On occasions it is also carried out earlier in the day when the facility is very busy and there is an increased build-up of snow.
On the evening of the incident, whilst the employee was carrying out his task, the glove on his left hand and jacket got caught in the pinch point between the roller and the conveyor belt, dragging his arm into the in running nip. The resistance he created was sufficient to stall and stop the conveyor as it was still powered up and running. The New Zealand Fire Service were called and cut him free from the machine.
He was transported to hospital where he underwent surgery to fix his fractured left arm, which involved inserting a metal plate.