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Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters

Safeguard OSH Solutions - Thomson Reuters



OSH Tracker

Department of Labour v Nestle New Zealand (DC, 26/01/99)

OSH Tracker

Defendant:
Nestle New Zealand
Proof that you don’t need a computer to get OOS has arrived following an OSH prosecution which arose after a cough lozenge sorter was left too long at her task without rotation. Confectionery manufacturer Nestlé New Zealand Ltd was convicted under s6 of the HSE Act and fined $6000 after an employee at the company’s Waiuku plant was diagnosed as suffering from OOS following her transfer to the lozenge department. Half the fine was awarded to the employee. (Pukekohe District Court, 26 January). In January 1998 the employee began working on the lozenge grading table. Of short stature, she stood on the concrete floor and, with arms almost fully extended, reached across the table to pick out reject lozenges, move good product along the table, and tip them from a tray into bins. By the middle of the following month she had developed a sore left arm biceps, left hand and thumb. A month later she could no longer carry on working. After being diagnosed with OOS she worked limited hours at various tasks and continued to suffer pain in her left arm and hand. The company’s health and safety policy recognised that employees carrying out certain repetitive tasks ran the risk of overuse, and had a policy of job rotation to avoid this outcome. However, there was no supervisor on duty for part of the injured employee’s 3.45pm to midnight shift, and she was not rotated. 
Industry:
Manufacturing
Sub-Industry:
Food, Beverage and Tobacco
Risk:
Musculoskeletal
Harm:
Injury
Penalty Amount:
$6000.00
Reparation Amount:
$3000.00
Appeared in Safeguard issue 55

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