Nursery fined after worker seriously injured in ‘gruesome’ incident

A Hamilton nursery has admitted it failed to provide a safe workplace after its worker became caught between a machine and a conveyer belt.

A Hamilton nursery has admitted it failed a worker whose arm became entangled between a seeding line machine and a conveyer belt, a court has heard.

Arborline was sentenced in Hamilton Magistrates Court on Friday after a worker was left seriously injured in October 2020.

The wholesale nursery was charged for failing to provide or maintain a safe plant following the incident.

The court heard the worker had been placing trays in a seeding line machine which moves along a conveyor belt.

The injured worker believed the machine was turned off as she reached in to clean spilt seeds when her arm became entangled between a moving feeder bar and an axle.

The incident caused serious injury to the worker’s hand and wrist.

The court heard the company did not install guarding around the exit of the machine which is required and was reasonably practicable to do so.

WorkSafe health and safety executive director Narelle Beer said duty holders must install proper guarding in dangerous areas of machines to avoid “gruesome” injuries.

“It’s absolutely essential that duty holders are doing everything they can to protect workers from the risk of machine entanglement,” Dr Beer said.

“It’s not enough to simply tell workers to be cautious. There needs to be proper guarding around danger areas of a machine to prevent gruesome injuries like this.

“Tragically, there have been 20 workplace fatalities so far this year. WorkSafe will not hesitate to prosecute employers who fail to provide safe and healthy working environments.”

Arborline was fined $52,500 without conviction and ordered to pay $3716.

Source: Herald Sun

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