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Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters

Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters



OSH Tracker

Department of Labour v Asda Dairies Ltd (DC, 08/03/95)

OSH Tracker

Defendant:
Asda Dairies
In the North Shore District Court on 8 March, Asda Dairies Limited was fined $2500 with costs of $590 for failing to give information to an employee about hazards the employee may create and steps to be taken to minimise the likelihood that the hazard would harm other people. In April 1994 two employees were cleaning the floor of the firm's mixing room.  As the formula they were using did not appear to be removng the substances on the floor they decided to use another chemical which they believed to be stronger.  One of the men decanted this chemical directly into the bucket containing the original formula and they then applied the mixture to the stubborn stains.  The workers put on masks because the fumes from the mixture were becoming stronger, but they eventually had to leave the building where they joined others who had been in the vicinity and affected by the fumes outside.  The two workers and four others were taken to hospital and released after observation and tests.  Emergency services attended the scene. Subsequent analysis of the two chemicals showed one to be 60 percent phosphoric acid and the other 14 percent sodium hypochlorite.  Chlorine gas is released when the two are mixed together.  OSH investigation of the incident showed that the man who mixed the chemicals had not received any instruction on either of the chemicals, nor had the firm provided a material safety data sheet or any other information on the chemicals or the dangers of mixing them. 
Industry:
Manufacturing
Sub-Industry:
Food, Beverage and Tobacco
Risk:
Hazardous substance exposure
Harm:
Injury
Penalty Amount:
$2500.00
Reparation Amount:
$0.00
Appeared in Safeguard issue 31

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