The director of a recycling plant where an employee’s arm was torn off at the outlet has been fined $70,000 for the incident.
Salvatore Tomo Mangione, director of Resource Recovery in Bayswater, Perth, has not ensured a safe work environment, a magistrate ruled Monday.
WorkSafe Commissioner Darren Kavanagh noted that the company had a history of “ignoring workplace safety laws”, including telling authorities that the factory was fully automated and no workers were present.
In January 2016, a temp worker’s arm was amputated at the shoulder when it became trapped in the crush point between a conveyor belt and a roller.
The man worked as a ‘picker’ to remove unsuitable items from the conveyor belts and clear blockages.
On the day of the incident, a clog had been cleared, and the tires had restarted when the worker reached in to remove a rock dragged to the crush point.
The court found no guarding around the conveyor belt or lockout tag-out procedure to isolate moving machinery when clearing blockages.
As a director, Mr. Mangione was found to have neglected his duty to make changes that prevented the incident.
Camera icon The worker’s arm was torn off at the shoulder after becoming trapped between a conveyor belt and a roller while trying to clear a blockage. Credit: News Corp Australia
Resource Recovery Solutions was fined $230,000 in April this year for failing to adhere to proper safety standards after successfully appealing a $330,000 fine in 2020.
It is not the first time the company has come into contact with safety regulators, including after the death of an employee in 2013 who was crushed after an overloaded roof panel fell on him.
Another employee suffered a broken arm in February 2015 when his arm was dragged into a moving conveyor belt.
“WorkSafe inspectors visited the workplace and found numerous conveyor belts were not monitored,” said Mr. Kavanag. h.
“They were reassured that the factory was fully automated and no workers were present when it was up and running.”
The Perth court ruled that the company could have implemented forced security measures, including a locking system to restrict access to the belt and a monitoring system to detect blockages in the belt.
It was also found that the company’s employees had not received sufficient information about hazards, formal instructions, training, or a supervisor’s direct supervision.
“Mr. Mangion. e has failed to make the changes necessary to make this workplace safe for employees, and he has been sanctioned accordingly today,” said Mr. Kavanag. h.