Court awards $700,000 to worker hospitalised after safety lapse

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A Queensland court has ordered a Mount Isa company to pay a former employee $700,000 plus legal costs following an incident where the woman was hospitalised a day after she swept uncovered fertiliser at the company’s store.

Judge Alan Wilson of the Supreme Court of Queensland noted that the woman swept the Rooster Booster fertiliser without wearing a respirator, mask or personal protective equipment and this was the most probable cause of the illness.

The defence argued that it was only a coincidence that the worker fell sick a day after sweeping the fertiliser, adding that an increase in atmospheric sulphur dioxide emissions in Mount Isa the same day the woman cleaned the fertiliser might also have caused the illness.

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