Pilbara Iron fined over death
■ A Rio Tinto subsidiary has been fined $70,000 over the death of an employee at the Brockman 2 mine more than four years ago.
Brent Glew was fatally crushed by a 1400kg tilt cylinder that was being removed from a front end loader in a maintenance workshop in August 2011.
Pilbara Iron Company was fined in Perth Magistrate’s Court last Thursday for failing to provide a safe working environment.
Magistrate Elizabeth Woods said the job was defined as “high risk”, but none of the employees who were involved had the required licence to do the work.
“The accused must protect its employees against risks and minimise them where possible,” Ms Woods said.
“Sometimes even the most diligent employees take short cuts and take risks to get the job done. It can’t be that companies are prepared to just take a chance and pay any fine.”
The court was told a similar incident two months before Mr Glew’s death had resulted in injuries.
Pilbara mines managing director Michael Gollschewski said Rio Tinto accepted it had failed to effectively manage the hazards associated with the job.
“Personally, and on behalf of the company, I wish to extend our sincere condolences to Brent’s family,” he said. “Taking the learnings from this tragic accident, we have made several changes that will help to eliminate workplace deaths and introduced a number of safety improvement programs.”
Pilbara Iron Company was ordered to pay $5000 in costs.
Brent Glew, 27, was killed while working at a Rio Tinto mine site on August 16, 2011.