Court Summary - at a glance
Being a PCBU having a duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety of workers who work for the PCBU, including [victim], while the workers were at work in the business or undertaking, did fail to comply with that duty, and that failure exposed workers to a risk of death or serious injury arising from contact with the moving parts of an Escher Wyss paper-making machine (the Machine).
It was reasonably practicable for Oji Fibre Solutions (NZ) Limited to have:
- Ensured the 1st press area of the Machine was adequately guarded (to the standard described in AS/NZS 4024 or better) so as to prevent access to hazardous roller nip points.
- Ensured that it monitored and reviewed the effectiveness of the safety features of the 1st press area of the Machine, including by conducting an effective risk assessment of the Machine.
On 20 December 2021, one of the defendant’s workers, [victim], noticed a build-up on the felt edge of one of the rollers and reached in an attempt to clear the machine. The rollers caught the end of his gloved hand and pulled his hand into the rollers. As a result, [victim] was severely injured.
He spent 10 days in hospital, undergoing three surgeries to treat his injuries. The pulp of his left thumb was removed. His index finger was crushed and lacerated leading to the loss of the tip and nail bed. He also suffered lacerations to and an amputation of the tip of his middle finger.
Alongside permanent flexion deformity to his middle finger, demonstratable impairment to his left hand was expected to last approximately 20 months.
Consequential loss - none sought or ordered - had paid top up as ordered in restorative justice
Costs - legal costs of $1,168.70 and experts costs in investigation $5,963.00