Electrical Safety:WorkCover To Investigate Electrocuted Employee

electrical safetyAn employee of Essential Energy was killed by electric shock early last week.

At approximately 10:30am, the 47-year old man  suffered the electric shock was working on the electricity network at Pacific Palms.

Ambulance crews reached the site and attempted first-aid but efforts were unsuccessful.

“Our employee was an electrical worker based at Bulahdelah depot.  Our deepest condolences are with the family, loved ones and work mates of our employee,” an Essential Energy representative said on Monday afternoon.

“Essential Energy’s priority is to do everything we can to make sure our employee’s family, loved ones and work mates are supported during this difficult time.”

Essential Energy is working in collaboration with the NSW Police and WorkCover to find a cause of the accident.

As a result of the accident, approximately 300 customers in the Pacific Palms area experienced  interruptions with their service.

“WorkCover investigators are attending the scene of the incident and we will restore supply once WorkCover gives us clearance to do so.

“An estimated time of restoration is not available at the moment. We appreciate our customers’ understanding.”

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Source: http://www.greatlakesadvocate.com.au/story/1746618/electrocuted-while-working-on-power-lines/

Electrical Safety: Coroner Calls For Safety Improvements Following Electrocution

electrical safetyA coroner has called for improvements to the safety practices of welders following an incident that resulted in the electrocution of a Queensland man.

In 2011, Daniel Paul Morris, 23, was resting on a metal hopper while welding at a Townsville Ridley Agproduce site  when he was electrocuted.

The investigation into his untimely death revealed that he was left unsupervised for majority of the time, and welding was curiously not a part of his job description. The coroner also revealed that even though the welding machine had no faults, the humid weather conditions might have led to the perspiration of Morris, leading to his electrocution.

The coroner recommended extra safety precautions when operating a welding machine in humid conditions and recommended workplace health and safety reopen an investigation whether Ridley should be prosecuted for negligence.

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Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-15/inquest-urges-safety-overhaul-after-welder-electrocuted/4889162?section=qld

Electrical Safety:Fuller Had Two Close Calls Prior To his Insulation Death

Two life threatening incidents occurred prior to the electrocution of Matthew Fuller, who was killed while installing insulation.

It was revealed in Brisbane’s Magistate’s court that Mr Fuller had received little safety training in his two weeks of starting work with QHI Installations,when one of the life threatening incidents occurred.

A second incident happened to a fellow worker, but in both cases the safety switch avoided further tragedy and little was followed up on.

Workplace Health and Safety principal inspector of investigations Doug Innes said Mr Fuller, along with workmate and girlfriend Monique Pridmore, lacked the necessary experience for their new job and supervision was necessary.

“Given the level of the extreme risk…and no experience, then the measures that should have been in place should have been at the highest level,” he said.

The inquiry was told Mr Fuller received little safety training and had only worked two weeks of the necessary two years of experience needed to perform the installation work.

Mr Innes was speaking at an inquest into the electrocution deaths of Mr Fuller, 16-year-old Rueben Barnes in 2009 and Mitchell Sweeney, 22, who died in 2010.

Mr Fuller and Mr Sweeney had been laying foil insulation using metal staplers and Mr Barnes had been installing fibreglass batts in a “live” ceiling cavity.

Department of Justice principal electrical safety officer Gerard Poynting said every house’s electrical wiring was different and it was often difficult to determine if the power had been completely shut off.

He told the inquiry the federal government initiative was known more commonly as the “pink bat scheme” and could have added to installation confusion.

“I don’t think a lot of people realised aluminum was used,” he said.

The inquiry continues.

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Source: http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/matthew-fuller-had-life-threatening-near-miss-in-week-before-death-from-electrocution-while-working-on-insulation-scheme/story-e6freoof-1226636752418

Boss of Insulation Death Employee Was Warned Seven Times



The company who employed the apprentice who was electrocuted while installing insulation, was reportedly sent seven safety alerts prior to the death.

Only weeks before the death, the company was sent a commonwealth ministerial notice reminding installation business to cut all power off in homes while putting insulation in.

The first-year apprentice  collapsed and died in November 2009 when he was electrocuted  while installing fibreglass insulation in the ceiling of a home.

The apprentice had been employed for less than a month prior to his death, and had yet to undergo any formal training that would render him capable and competent in electrical safety.

The Court heard that had  the power been shut off while Rueuben Barnes  began laying insulation, the outcome would have been different.

Co-director Chris Jackson of Arrow Property Maintenance claimed to only recall one of the seven notices regarding electrical safety that were emailed to the company.

The alerts called for installers to undertake a one day safety training.

Jackson alleged that he was computer illiterate and an administrative employee, Denise Watson checked all company email correspondence.

“You never saw any of these installer advices?” barrister Geraldine Dann, acting for Barne’s siblings, asked.

“No,” he replied.

“Denise never brought any of them to your attention?”


Mr Jackson added he may have seen one of the notices but believed his company was complying with safety requirements.

The inquest will last one week, with an addition three days in May.

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Source: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/insulation-electrocution-boss-warned-seven-times-20130312-2fy0r.html#ixzz2NkCgYuLA

Electrical Safety: Insulation Inquest Reveals A Lack of Training

A investigation by a coroner has revealed that the Brisbane teen who died while installing insulation, had received no training and was not supplied with the proper protective equipment.

The court was informed that newly-hired carpentry apprentice Ruben Barnes, 16, had been employed by Arrow Maintenance for under a month when he was electrocuted at a Rockhampton home in 2009.

The corner informed the court that the teen had not received any insulation training and no induction, and co-workers had not been trained in first-aid treatment for electric shock.

The apprentice was one of three individuals who died in Queensland as a result of home insulation safety errors.

A month prior, Mathew Fuller, 25, also suffered electrocution at Logan, while Mitchell Sweeney, 22, died in north QLD in early 2010.

The inquest will look into 11 safety issues such as why it was not mandatory to cut off or isolate any power during installation jobs.

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Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-03-11/insulation-inquest-told-no-training-provided/4566040?section=qld

Electrical Safety: Worker Survives High Voltage Shock

Electrical Safety TrainingA worker has luckily survived a potentially fatal electric shock when the boom of a concrete pumping truck came into contact with high-voltage power lines.

The building site worker was allegedly controlling a section of the boom in which concrete flows when another part of the device connected with the power line. The Collinsvale incident caused a blackout for approximately 1300 customers before it was eventually restored.Aurora energy spokeswoman, Sarah Baddeley said that the incident should stand as a warning for people to take heed  when using high objects.  Baddeley stated that there were 36 incidents of contact with electrical lines in Tasmania.

In response to these incidents Aurora Energy has launched a “Look up Look Out” campaign aimed at promoting electrical safety.The incident was investigated by an electrical inspector on behalf of Workplace Standards.WorkPlace Standards general manager Roy Ormerod lamented about the high number of incidents pertaining to equipment coming into contact with power lines.

Approximately half of the incidents reported  to WorkPlace standards were in relation to electricity.Other Electrical Safety incidents reported to Workplace Standards included separate incidents in which a tray truck and an excavator came into contact with electrical wires. Fortunately in all of these cases the operators evaded serious injury or death.

Source: http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2012/03/01/305121_tasmania-news.html

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Electrical Safety: Water Meter Staff Are Shocked

electrical safety trainingWorkers have cited concerns over receiving electric shocks from water meters being installed .Southern Water has reported that six incidents are have been investigated by Workplace Standards since the rollout last year.These reports come after the Master Plumbers Association of Tasmania cited concerns with safety in August regarding the rollout plans.

The association cited problems when the contract for the installation of the meters was awarded to a NSW company which sub-contracted the work out to locals.During that ordeal, the association’s executive officer Adrian Cowie stated that they had received reports alleging that contractors were not adequately trained to do the basic work.

Howrah Plumbing owner Hans Verdou, stated that the schedule for the rollout came too rapidly which, they feared would cause safety issues.   Cowie stated that the incidents were not surprising since in the older areas of Hobart, water pipes were used for earthing. He continued by stating that a formal standard safety practice is required in order for people to avoid the potential risk of getting electric shock. However, when the procedure is not executive then a shock could occur.

Souther Water’s Mike Paine stated that all the incidents involved workers coming into contact with stray electrical currents. Paine alleges that the risk of stray currents was identified during the planning phase and was thus included in the safety management plan of the contractor.Southern Water claims they had consulted Aurora Energy and Workplace Standards Tasmania, who both approved their safety procedures.

Workplace Standards general manager Roy Ormerod stated that the issues have been resolved and that measures to reduce risks are being implemented to avoid any risk of electrical shock.

The rollout of water meters will continue this month throughout the Hobart area.

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Source: http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2012/01/31/296911_tasmania-news.html 

Electrical Safety: Man Suffers Electric Shock At Cycling Championships

electrical safety trainingA man remains in critical condition after experiencing a serious electric shock while setting up speakers at Buninyong’s Cycling Australia Road National Championships.  George Langley was connecting the speakers to a tree when one of the cables came into contact with a power line. Police Acting Sergeant Brendan Vann stated that it appeared that Mr.Langley was on top of a minivan while attaching the speakers.

At some point a co-worker tossed Langley a speaker cable which struck an overhead power line.  Paramedic Graham McGrath stated that Langley had gone into cardiac arrest as a result of his electric shock. It took five paramedics and a MICA unit to revive him after 30 minutes.

McGrath offered praise for Langley’s workmates and a passing cyclist who conducted CPR on Langley until paramedics had arrived. Langley was working as part of George Langley Public Address Systems, a family business started by his father. It is believed that the business is a long-time contractor for the City of Ballarat. Ballarat Regional Tourism director George Sossi has since expressed regret over the accident, believing that it casts a shadow over the cycling championships. WorkSafe is on the scene and is investigating the freak accident.

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Source: http://www.thecourier.com.au/news/local/news/general/electric-shock-victim-still-critical/2412687.aspx

Electrical Safety Investigations Continue into Death of Apprentice

WORKPLACE Health and Safety officers will today continue investigatingthe death of an apprentice electrician who was electrocuted while working at Bentley Park College.

The apprentice, 20, was working inside theceiling of the student services building when he came into contact with live wires about 8.10am yesterday.

Queensland Ambulance Service operations manager Neil Noble said school staff frantically tried to resuscitate the man inside the roof while waiting for paramedics to arrive.

“He was working on electrical wiring in the roof and he’s touched some live wire and it’s electrocuted him,” Mr Noble said.

“Staff at the school did CPR in the ceiling before bringing him down for paramedics.”

Ambulance officers spent about 30 minutes trying to resuscitate him but failed.

His employer, Edmonton-based Goggo’s Electrical Services, did not return calls from The Cairns Post yesterday.

Skills360 Australia chief executive Peter Langbien said he was deeply saddened by the apprentice’s death.

“It’s a tragedy we are still trying to come to terms with,” he said.

“We’re working with all the authorities and are mostly concerned with the (man’s) family.

“Our thoughts are with the worker’s family and co-workers.”

Education Queensland Far Northern regional director Clive Dixon said staff and students were being offered support.

“The Bentley Park College school community in Cairns is deeply saddened by the death of an electrical contractor,” he said.

“This is just an absolute tragedy and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this difficult time.”

A Department of Justice spokeswoman said inspectors from the Electrical Safety Office and Workplace Health and Safety attended the school yesterday and were investigating the death.

She said the joint investigation would examine if any breaches were committed by the company.

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Source: http://www.cairns.com.au/article/2012/12/13/237554_local-news.html

Electrician Found Dead At Hotel

electrical safety trainingAn electrician has been killed while doing work on  a luxurious hotel. The exclusive hotel the electrician was working at is the Palazzo Versace.  Paramedics were called to the scene when the man was found floating in the hotel pool. It is alleged that the electrical contractor was replacing a pool light when he died.

He was pronounced dead at the scene by the emergency service workers. The cause of death remains unknown but it is not considered suspicious.  Workplace Health and Safety continue to investigate the incident  and to determine if it was indeed an electrical safety issue.


Electrocution results in $100,000 fine

electrical safety coursesThe electrocution of a Gold Coast insulation worker has resulted in fining of his employers. Titan Insulations has pleaded guilty for failing to provide a safe work environment that adhered to electrical safety requirements.

The magistrate has since ordered the company to pay 100 thousand dollars in fines within the next 2 years. The magistrate Paul Cluck said that despite the company efforts to enroll its staff in electrical safety training—they failed in ensuring that their staff did not use metal staples.

Two directors of Titan Insulations had been formally charged with failing to comply with the Electrical Safety Act. However, these charges have been dismissed.

Families of the deceased have stated their approval of the verdict.

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-08-30/charges-dropped-over-insulation-electrocution/2862714

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