Goodman Fielder Consumer Foods Pty Ltd was convicted and fined last week over an incident at its Pampas factory in West Footscray which left a worker with serious and permanent injuries to his arm.
The company admitted guilt in court to failing to provide a safe work environment and failing to provide proper training under OHS regulations.
The injured employee worked for labour hire company Skilled Group Ltd and had been working at the company’s Pampas factory for two years before the incident occurred September 2009.
It was revealed in court that the worker was cleaning a dough extruder when it suddenly activated, catching the worker’s arm in the machine.
An investigation found the worker received insufficient training in how to operate the machine’s controls, which led to him failing to properly de-activate the machine before cleaning it.Informal training was carried out while on the job by fellow workers but they did not meet the proper OHS approach.
The investigation also revealed that the machine was not properly guarded.Lisa Sturzenegger, WorkSafe’s General Manager for Health and Safety Operations, said
“Properly guarding machines is a fundamental safety requirement that employers must act on to avoid incidents like this from happening,” she said.
“Businesses have to make sure moving parts of a machine have proper guards or physical barriers fitted.
“As this incident has shown, inadequately training staff can have distressing consequences for all involved.”
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