New Zealand’s workplace safety regulator has accepted an enforceable undertaking from a glass supply and glazing company following an incident in January 2017 when a worker’s leg was crushed in machinery.
The victim was injured when the glass cutting machine he was working with jammed. He climbed onto the machine to investigate and as the jam was cleared, the machine inadvertently began operating again, crushing the worker’s leg.
Because of the incident, the worker suffered a compound dislocation of his left ankle that required weeks of hospitalisation and more than two months off work.
Following WorkSafe New Zealand’s investigation, it was found that the company had failed its employee under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015, including a lack of safety procedures and guarding involving the piece of machinery.
WorkSafe Deputy General Manager, Investigations and Specialist Services, Simon Humphries acknowledged that the company has recognised the importance of educating industry partners in the safe operation of machinery and have shown consideration and leadership.
“We know language and cultural differences can sometimes be a barrier to effective health and safety management. The activities outlined in this undertaking focus on language, culture, and diversity in health and safety as well,” he said.
Under the enforceable undertaking, the company commits to:
- provide amends in the form of payment to the victim and support to the victim
- develop a suite of initiatives to benefit the workplace and workers
- host workshops for Lisec cutting machine operators within the glass industry
- present and sponsor a session at the Windows Association of New Zealand and Glass Association New Zealand annual conferences
- provide specialised training courses in conjunction with the Glass & Glazing Institute NZ
- produce community resources on health, safety, wellbeing, inclusion, and diversity
- offer a scholarship for a trade qualification at the Mount Albert Unitech Institute of Technology
- sponsor Community Alcohol & Other Drug Services in the South Auckland community for language interpretation services
WorkSafe will monitor compliance of the enforceable undertaking.