Farm manager awarded $50,000 after quad bike incident
A farm manager has been awarded reparations of $50,000 after a 2012 quad bike crash at work. His employers were fined $20,000 for failing to keep him safe at work.
The farm manager broke his neck and sustained permanent brain damage when his quad bike hit a large tree while he was rounding up his dogs. He was not wearing a helmet, although one had been purchased for the farm.
He was in an induced coma for two weeks.
The farm owners, Karen Anne McLanachan and Kenneth Rae McLanachan, were sentenced today in the Gisborne District Court under the Health and Safety in Employment Act for failing to take all practicable steps to ensure the safety of their employee.
The sentencing judge, Judge Collin, said the McLanachan’s key failure was not having hazard identification or controls in place. He stated that it was “as obvious as night follows day” that had the defendants had a health and safety plan in place, then it would have followed that there would have been a clear direction that no one was to get on the quad bike without a helmet.
A 2014 investigation by WorkSafe health and safety inspectors could not determine why the bike collided with the tree.