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Caboolture crane company fined

Wednesday, 27 Feb 2019 ( #912 ) - Brisbane, Qld, Australia
Local News Story
A Caboolture crane company has been fined $45,000
A Caboolture crane company has been fined $45,000 in the Pine Rivers Magistrates Court after a workplace incident involving the erection of a crane in 2016.

In 2016, the company was erecting a crane at a four-storey commercial development in North Lakes when the counterweights fell off it. No one was injured, but there was potential for significant injury and damage.

Assembly of the Potain mobile tower crane had commenced, four lower block-type counterweights had been positioned on the support brackets and the crane’s four outrigger legs were engaged. The crane boom was partially unfolded and a total of eight wrap-around weights had been positioned on top of the block weights using a mobile Franna crane.

Workers were in the process of retrieving the ninth wrap-around weight when the counterweights on the crane became unstable. They fell from the base of the crane hitting the suspended slab, punching several holes in it.

A Workplace Health and Safety Queensland investigation identified there was inadequate restraint on the lower block-type counterweights.

Magistrate Trevor Morgan acknowledged the relatively small company had been in business for over 15 years and had no previous workplace health and safety breaches. He noted the company had cooperated fully with the investigation and entered an early guilty plea.

Despite the lack of injury and no evidence that anyone was directly at risk during the incident, Magistrate Morgan noted that the erection and operation of cranes require religious adherence to manufacturers’ instructions and correct procedures.

The company was fined $45,000 and ordered to pay court costs of approximately $1,500.
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