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Warehouse Safety: Food Company Fined After Worker Loses Finger
The Australian company plead guilty in the Moorabbin Magistrates’ Court this week to one count of failing to provide a safe system of work and proper instruction, training and supervision.The employee allegedly crawled under a device that was utilized for the manufacture and packaging of health bars; to sanitize its rollers. The court heard that crawling under the machine to take off the guarding was common practice in the factory.
While the worker was cleaning the machine, it would remain in operation so that the rollers may perhaps be cleaned. However, on 29 June 2010, when the worker undertaking the task, the cloth she was using became trapped and as she tried to remove it, her supplementary hand, which was resting on the machine so she can balance herself, was caught in the rollers.
The moving machinery severed half of her middle finger.The investigation by WorkSafe alleged that Healthy Snacks Australia neglected to conduct an efficient risk assessment associated with the use of the machine, nor did they ensure that employees were prohibited from cleaning the machine while it was operating. The company was also found to not provide any training or supervision to its workers who cleaned the machine. Lastly, the company neglected to inform the employees of standard operating procedures, specifically when cleaning the machine. Healthy Snacks AU was ordered to pay a $60,000 fine and $3000 in WorkSafe expenses on the case.
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