Construction companies charged over 2017 death

NT WorkSafe has charged Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd and Whittens Group Pty Ltd, after a worker was killed in a workplace incident at the Inpex Onshore LNG Facility.

On 29 November 2017, the 56-year-old Whittens Group employee was conducting insulation repair works on one of the LNG tanks. The works being performed were high risk, in a confined space, with workers exposed to the risk of falling from height and engulfment into the insulation product below.

At approximately 8.00 pm the worker fell while inside the confined space and was engulfed by the insulation and suffocated. At the time of the incident the worker was operating alone, and although he was wearing a harness it was not secured while he was working.

NT WorkSafe will allege that with the death of the worker, that both Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd and Whittens Group Pty Ltd failed in their health and safety duty under section 19 of the Work Health and Safety (National Uniform Legislation) Act 2011 (the Act). Specifically the companies failed to:

  • provide and maintain a safe system of work as per section 19(3)(c); and
  • provide supervision as per section 19(3)(f).

The offences have been charged under section 32 of the Act for failing to comply with a health and safety duty.

The charge carries a maximum penalty of $1,500,000.

The matter is listed for mention in the Darwin Local Court on 14 January 2020.

NT WorkSafe
1800 019 115