Company pays for worker losing fingers in machine

COURT REPORTER
Last updated 05:00 20/12/2013

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A Washdyke company is paying the price after a worker lost part of two fingers.

South Canterbury By-Products was fined $30,000 and ordered to pay $10,000 in reparations after the employee cut two of his fingers in a blade machine.

The company, a rendering plant for animal by-products, pleaded guilty to one charge of breaching health and safety. The case was heard yesterday in the Timaru District Court.

The victim, a supervisor, who had worked for the company for 28 years, was taking samples for salmonella at the time of the incident. He had opened the hatch door to the machine, but it closed on him. He reopened it to continue his work, resulting in severe lacerations to one finger and the amputation of another.

Judge Joanna Maze said steps should have been taken to ensure such an incident did not happen.

"Had the area been fitted with a guard the problem would have been avoided and the situation would not have occurred. The remedy was cheap, simple and obvious."

However, she took into consideration the company's remorse.

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- The Timaru Herald

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