Concrete firm fined $230k after worker loses 3 fingers

A concrete company has been fined $230,000 after a worker who slipped while using a saw severed three fingers in a horror workplace accident.

The employee was working alone in an manhole in ankle-deep water when the saw kicked back.

His fingers, severed from his right hand, were unable to be attached.

Today his workplace, Canterbury Concrete Cutting NZ Limited, was fined for the "absolutely preventable" accident.

WorkSafe found that the company failed to ensure the health and safety of the worker, exposing him to a risk of death or serious injury arising from hazards associated with using the saw.

Chief inspector Steve Kelly said any employer carrying out work in this kind of environment should be well aware of the risks.

"I ask employers and workers to consider the long term impact of losing three fingers. This worker has suffered injuries that will affect him for the rest of his life."

"Preventing workers from sustaining serious injury relies on making a risk assessment and ensuring there are appropriate safety controls and emergency procedures in place.

The April 2018 incident occurred as the employee was left to work alone in the manhole, which was at another site.

"This incident also highlights the importance of consulting, cooperating and coordinating with other businesses involved on a job."

The company was fined $229,921 for the accident.

Canterbury Concrete Cutting NZ Limited must also pay $23,400 in reparations for failing to appropriately manage risk and identify safe work methods and controls in the workplace.

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