Sydney company fined after worker’s fingers severed

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Photo: Mdesigns, Pixabay

A Sydney-based company and its director have been fined after a 51-year-old worker’s hand was crushed while cleaning machinery.

All four of the worker’s fingers and thumb were severed when she placed her hand inside a pillow filling machine to clean it after use.

Minister for Better Regulation Matt Kean said the company was fined $60,000 and its director $7,500 in the Sydney District Court for failing to ensure the health and safety of their workers.

“There is no excuse for this type of negligence. Businesses must have the right safety systems in place to protect their workers,” Mr. Kean said.

The Minister said the company had failed to properly guard the machine and to train and supervise its workers to ensure its safe operation.

“I’m appalled to hear this poor woman was not provided with appropriate training or information about the risks, or safety measures for using the machine,” he said.

“The shredding mechanism of the machine did not have a protective guard installed, and the company also failed to make sure adequate supervision was in place.”

The court was told the injured worker was also not aware the machine required approximately 3-4 minutes to come to a complete halt after it was switched off.

“SafeWork will continue to go after those who aren’t doing the right thing,” Mr. Kean said.

“Punishments like this, and the work the NSW government is doing, aim to keep employers in check. I want to ensure that everyone who heads off to work in the morning, returns home safely to their family at night.

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