Cardboard company fined after hand crushed in roller
A Campbellfield cardboard box manufacturer was last week convicted and fined $55,000 after two workers’ hands were crushed in a new paper mill roller. Lakeside Packaging Pty Ltd pleaded guilty in the Broadmeadows Magistrates’ Court to one charge of failing to ensure persons other than employees were not exposed to risks to their health and safety.
In March 2016 an experienced paper maker, who was not an employee of the company, was helping test the new paper mill when his left glove got caught in a nip point between two moving rollers. The 48-year-old’s hand was pulled into the roller, crushing his fingers and causing serious injuries that required surgery.
This followed an incident just two hours earlier, when a 28-year-old employee was using the paper mill and his hand was crushed after being caught in the same nip point. He was also taken to hospital for surgery.
A WorkSafe investigation found plans were prepared for installing a physical barrier to guard the perimeter of the paper mill area before the incidents but were never completed.
The court heard that the company should have known of the entrapment risks, both before the mill was tested and after the first crush incident.
On December 9, the Company Director entered into a Diversion Plan: the matter was adjourned to 8 December 2020.
WorkSafe Executive Director of Health and Safety Julie Nielsen said there was no excuse for exposing workers to dangerous machines that can cause lifelong and traumatic injuries. "Failing to install proper guarding before using moving machinery is simply unacceptable and can have horrific consequences," Ms Nielsen said.
Read more, including advice on actions to prevent entrapment: WorkSafe media release
To read more to keep up to date with prosecutions, go to the WorkSafe Prosecution Result Summaries and Enforceable Undertakings webpage.