July 19, 2021
Rule slip leads to forest death
WorkSafe says a forestry fatality on the East Coast could have been avoided if industry guidance had been followed.
In the incident in February 2019, a breaker out worker for Pakiri Logging Limited at Earnslaw One’s West Ho forest in Tolaga Bay was struck by a log being hauled out of the valley on a skyline cable.
He died at the scene as a result of his injuries.
On Friday at the Gisborne District Court, Pakiri Logging was fined $468,000 and forest owner Earnslaw One was fined $288,000.
The companies were also ordered to pay $238,000 in reparations to the families.
WorkSafe area manager Danielle Henry says an investigation found Pakiri was not ensuring crew followed correct protocols for breaking out and harvesting work – despite concerns being raised in audits the previous year.
At the time of the incident, the victim was 18-20 metres away from the skyline cable when he should have been at least 45 metres away.
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