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Sun December 16 2018

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Collapse of transmission tower brings fine for New Zealand contractor

27 Nov A New Zealand contractor has been fined more than NZ$332,000 (£220,000) after a worker suffered multiple injuries when a when a 30m-high temporary transmission tower collapsed.

Electrix Limited has been sentenced following the accident. The worker, who was harnessed to the top of the tower was injured in August 2016 when it fell to the ground. The temporary tower was installed as part of the Waikato Expressway development.

The investigation by workplace safety authority WorkSafe found that the tower was not safely secured for the work being undertaken on it.  Electrix was found to have failed to: develop and implement a safe system of work, ensure the tower was erected in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and ensure the competency of its workers on the towers.

WorkSafe’s head of specialist interventions Simon Humphries said the sentencing should remind those working in the industry to ensure they understand and mitigate the many risks associated with that industry. “The fact that tower fell in the first place is completely unacceptable. If you are expecting your workers to carry out their duties 30 metres in the air, then as an employer you need to have absolute and failsafe measures in place to keep those workers safe. This worker was lucky to escape this incident with his life but will carry the injuries and trauma sustained in the incident with him for the rest of his life.”

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