In October 2016, two workers were crushed to death by two 14-tonne precast concrete panels during the construction of a foul water drainage tank at the Eagle Farm Racecourse, when the panels toppled into the tank pit. In September 2018, Criscon Pty Ltd plead guilty to two offences of failure to comply with duties under section 32 of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (Qld). A fine of $405,000 and costs of $3,179.20 were imposed with no convictions recorded. In December 2019, the appellant appealed to a single judge under section 222 of the Justices Act 1886 (Qld) that the previously imposed fines and non-convictions were inadequate.
Criscon (now in liquidation), were found to have failed to:
- perform risk assessments under the WHS Risks Code of Practice 2011;
- identify foreseeable hazards;
- stop works/provide a safe work environment;
- provide training in the SWM and comply to brace panels to AS 3850;
- ensure no individual stood under a suspended load;
- implement an audit schedule; and
- provide emergency escape routes.
The appeal was granted and the fine upgraded from $405,000 to $625,000. No convictions were recorded.
Full case note: https://archive.sclqld.org.au/qjudgment/2019/QDC19-252.pdf