SafeWork SA has been successful in securing a conviction against a formwork business whose employee was injured when he fell from a height of more than four metres.
TC Formwork Pty Ltd pleaded guilty to a breach of section 32 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 and was fined $120,000, after a 40% reduction for an early guilty plea.
In December 2016, TC Formwork Pty Ltd had subcontracted to carry out formworks on a site at Windsor Gardens, including the construction and installation of a metal deck.
During this work, a worker fell over an exposed edge of formwork from a height of 4.4 metres above the ground, fracturing his leg. The investigation found that the business failed to ensure safe systems of work by not installing a static line system or fall restraint system and not ensuring that workers wore harnesses.
The charges laid against TC Formwork Pty Ltd by SafeWork SA were:
Contrary to section 32 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 (SA) TC Formwork Pty Ltd had a health and safety duty, failed to comply with that duty and that failure exposed workers … to a risk of death or serious injury.
SafeWork SA Executive Director Martyn Campbell said the judgement should send a clear reminder to businesses and employers that the health and safety of workers is critical.
“This is a reminder that businesses working at height need to ensure their workers use a system of work which minimises the risk of a worker falling.
“This includes ensuring that an appropriate static line system, or fall restraint system is installed and that workers wear appropriate harnesses prior to commencing work at height.
“We cannot put a price on a worker’s life – and we can ensure their wellbeing by having safe systems of work in place and by strictly adhering to them.”