Wodonga firm faces BP trailer crash case

By: Rob McKay

WorkSafe prosecution follow triple fatality due to detached trailer

Wodonga firm faces BP trailer crash case
Wodonga Magistrates Court


A 2014 accident that saw three fatalities and the temporary grounding of BP’s Victorian tanker fleet has seen Magistrates court action in Wodonga.

BP faced the greatest scrutiny immediately after the tragedy, in Victoria and New South Wales, but now Wodonga company Heavy Mechanics is facing one charge under the 2004 OHS Act of failing to ensure that people other than its employees were not exposed to risks to their health and safety.

The charge is against the business rather than an individual.

The maximum penalty that can be imposed by the courts in such a case is $1.33 million.

The incident occurred on August 7, 2014, at Staghorn Flat, where a trailer detached from the truck as it travelled around a bend. The trailer drifted across the road into the path of two oncoming cars.

The next court appearance is a committal hearing in Wodonga Magistrates Court on March 6.

According to the Border Mail, WorkSafe Victoria charges centre on how a tow-eye coupling was disassembled during examination for wear and tear and how a related nut was tightened.

WorkSafe tells ATN it is unable to comment on the case.

The incident came a year after the Mona Vale disaster that saw BP withdraw Cotes from its list of contract contenders.


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