Firewood Direct (Motueka) Limited

Court Summary - at a glance

Date of offence:
4 February 2015
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Final decision date:
 
Fine imposed:
$25,000

Safety lessons learned:
  1. Ensure guarding is installed between the control booth and the splitting chamber, which provides protection equal or better than the standard set by AS/NZS 4024 and the Guidelines;
  2. Ensure an effective health and safety system is developed, implemented, maintained and monitored to provide for the assessment of hazards and to determine appropriate controls;
  3. Ensure an effective procedure is implemented and monitored for an operator to switch off the machine before reaching into the splitting chamber to clear wood.

Defendant name:
Firewood Direct (Motueka) Limited
 
Industry:
Manufacturing
 
Date of offence:
4 February 2015
 
Facts in brief:
The Defendant company processes and supplies firewood.

On the day of the incident, the victim was operating a wood processing machine from a control booth situated next to the machine’s wood splitting chamber. When he reached into the chamber to retrieve a piece of wood, he inadvertently activated a button which activated the splitting ram head. His hand was caught between the splitting ram head and a piece of wood causing a serious crush injury.

The victim suffered the amputation of three fingers and a portion of his right hand, an extensive degloving injury, the fracturing of bones in his forearm, broken ribs, shoulder pain and a punctured lung.
 
Offence section:
Sections 6 and 50(1)(a) of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992
 
Date charged:

Court:
Nelson - District Court
 
Plea:
Guilty
 
Final decision date:
 
Decision:
Convicted
 
Fine imposed:
$25,000
 
Maximum fine available:
$250,000
 
Reparation:
$41,774.46