A tree lopper from Myaree was fined $ 12,000 in the Rockingham Magistrates Court yesterday for failing to provide and maintain a safe workplace.
The incident that was referred to happened in May 2010 when the tree lopper was contracted by the Department of Housing and Works to cut trees. The owner of the service and one of his employees were thrown from a cherry picker landing on the roof of a building nearby.
The front stabilizer leg had sunk into the ground causing the cherry picker to move and the boom to strike the ground. Both men were thrown from the cherry picker and sustained injuries.
In the court hearing it was revealed that stabiliser plates that are recommended when on soft ground were not used and the safety stabilisers had been interfered with so that the boom could elevate without them.
Neither of the two men in the cherry picker were wearing any PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), including safety harnesses, at the time. One of the controls was missing and a hammer was in its place and the safety interlock switch had been disabled using tape.