CHARGES LAID OVER FATAL VIETNAM TRIP

A 16-year-old participant in a school trip to Vietnam in 2019, organised by World Challenge Expeditions, experienced diabetes-related complications, and later passed away at Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital.

Kilvington Grammar School in Ormond faces one charge under section 23(1) of our OHS Act of failing to ensure non-employees were not exposed to health and safety risks.

WorkSafe alleges the school did not adequately reduce the risk of illness or death for diabetic students during school trips.

World Challenge Expeditions Pty Ltd faces three charges under the same section for failing to mitigate risks for participating students, including those with diabetes.

The student had received medical clearance for the trip but fell ill during a bus ride to Hue in central Vietnam. His vital signs were monitored by the trip leader, who then provided water, Panadol, and anti-nausea medication.

The trip leader discussed monitoring glucose levels overnight with the student, who agreed to wake up and adjust them or seek help if necessary.

A teacher discovered his high blood glucose levels at 5 am the next morning and he was promptly taken to the hospital. Despite being transferred to intensive care, the student experienced a cardiac arrest and was airlifted to the Royal Children’s Hospital, where he was pronounced brain-dead and removed from life support.

A Coroner later determined that his death resulted from brain damage due to diabetes complications, in preventable circumstances that could have been easily avoided.

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