Spinal injuries sustained during farm 4WD rollover

Tuesday, 14 November, 2017

A farm worker has suffered a serious spinal injury after being thrown from a 4WD vehicle in October.

The incident took place on a fruit and vegetable farm, where seven people were in a vehicle that was not fitted with restraints for passengers.

The injured worker was in the back of the 4WD, which rolled over when the driver lost control.

Two other passengers rode in the front and three in the back, while two were seated on the roof rack. The passengers on the roof were thrown clear and escaped serious injury, but others sustained minor injuries. The vehicle had no rear seating or restraints for passengers and an assortment of farming equipment was being carried unsecured.

It is unclear at this stage what caused the driver of the vehicle to lose control and investigations are continuing.

The PCBU is also being investigated for failing to immediately notify Workplace Health and Queensland (WHSQ) after becoming aware of the incident and for failing to preserve the incident site.

Many workplaces use vehicles to carry passengers for work. Vehicles include cars, trucks, ATVs or other forms of mobile plant. Vehicles may be confined to use within the workplace or used on public roads. When carrying passengers in a vehicle, each passenger must have an allocated seat and the passenger must be provided with the same level of protection as the driver.

PCBUs must manage risks associated with:

  • vehicles overturning
  • things falling on the operator
  • the operator (and any passengers) being ejected
  • the vehicle colliding with any person or thing.
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