Freight Haulage Limited

Court Summary - at a glance

Date of offence:
10 June 2015
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Final decision date:
 
Fine imposed:
$33,750

Safety lessons learned:
  1. Ensuring that there were documented procedures in place for the operation of forklifts including:
  2. Ensuring the separation of people from operating forklifts;
  3. Ensuring that forklift operators do not allow anyone under the tines; and
  4. Ensuring that there were documented procedures in place for the removal of headboards from trailer units.

Defendant name:
Freight Haulage Limited
 
Industry:
Postal, transport and warehousing
 
Date of offence:
10 June 2015
 
Facts in brief:
The Defendant company operates a transportation business which handles containers of freight from a yard and rail siding premises.

The victim was employed by the Defendant as a truck driver. On the day of the incident, the victim was preparing to transport a container on his truck and trailer unit. To do so, he needed to remove the headboard from the front of the trailer. He requested assistance from a colleague who was operating a forklift nearby. The forklift operator slid a strop from the headboard onto the forklift’s left tine and lifted the headboard. The headboard was not evenly secured on the forks and it began to rotate. The victim moved between the tines of the forklift and attempted to stabilise the headboard. There was a mechanical fault and the tines suddenly dropped. The victim was hit in the face and knocked to the ground.

The victim suffered serious concussion, a jawbone fracture and seven broken facial bones requiring three titanium plates to be inserted.
 
Offence section:
Section 6 and section 50(1)(a) of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992
 
Date charged:

Court:
Invercargill - District Court
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Final decision date:
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Fine imposed:
$33,750
 
Maximum fine available:
$250,000
 
Reparation:
$0 (The Defendant had already paid $5,000 to the victim and further reparation was not sought)