Three companies charged over pedestrian’s death

bin truck_Hans

Photo: Hans, Pixabay

Three companies have been convicted and fined $825,000 after a pedestrian was struck by a commercial recycling bin at a fast food outlet in March 2013.

All companies were found guilty of one charge each, in contravention of section 23 of the OHS Act, for failing to ensure people other than employees were not exposed to risks to their health and safety.

Each of them was fined $275,000 following a trial in the Melbourne County Court.

The victim, an elderly man, and his wife were walking through the fast food’s car park when they walked in front of a Visy truck which was lowering a large recycling bin. They were knocked to the ground by the bin and were brought to a hospital where the husband died later on because of his injuries.

The court heard that although the truck driver performed all the necessary checks before lowering the bin, there was no traffic management system implemented by the three companies despite the truck having to reverse up to 80m to access the bin located between the fast food outlet’s entrance and drive-through, while negotiating cars and pedestrians in the car park.

“Failing to address the serious risks posed by trucks operating in shared spaces is simply not good enough and in this case the consequences were tragic,” said WorkSafe Acting Executive Director of Health and Safety Paul Fowler.

“Employers must eliminate or reduce the likelihood of trucks and other large machinery coming into contact with pedestrians, and WorkSafe will not hesitate to prosecute companies in their responsibility to do this.”

More information about this is available on WorkSafe Victoria’s website.

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