On 28 July 2020, a worker employed by a specialty wholesale bakery pleaded guilty and was sentenced in the Richlands Magistrates Court for breaching s 32 of the Act, having failed to meet his work health and safety duty. He held a duty under s 28 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (the ‘Act’) to ensure his conduct did not put the safety of others workers at risk.

On 20 November 2018, in the packing room of a bread factory located in the Brisbane suburb of Darra, the defendant was operating a forklift, when another worker exited an adjacent freezer room, approaching another stationary forklift in the packing room. Shortly after, the defendant reversed his forklift, crushing the other worker between the two forklifts.

The injured worker received soft tissue injuries as a result of the collision.

CCTV footage revealed that the defendant was not looking in the direction of travel while reversing the forklift.

The defendant cooperated with the investigation. His employment was terminated after the incident.

In sentencing the defendant, Magistrate Shearer noted that the defendant was reversing the forklift without looking and referred to his conduct as “gross stupidity”.

OWHSP contact: enquiries@owhsp.qld.gov.au

Court Report

General
Industry
Accommodation and food services
Date of offence
Injury
Soft tissue injuries
Court
Richlands Magistrates Court
Magistrate or judge
Magistrate Stuart Shearer
Decision date
Worker
Legislation

Section 32, duty 28, Work Health and Safety Act 2011

Plea
Guilty
Penalty
$3,000
Maximum fine available
$150,000
Professional and legal costs
N/A
Court costs
N/A
In default period to pay
Referred to SPER
Conviction recorded
No