NSW: 18-year-old apprentice auto electrician killed

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Tuesday, 11 February, 2020 - 13:00
Incidents & prosecutions
New South Wales

An 18-year-old apprentice auto electrician recently died after becoming trapped between the cab of a truck and its engine, at a workshop in Brocklehurst, north of Dubbo.

SafeWork NSW inspectors responded to the incident and the regulator has commenced an investigation to determine the cause and circumstances of the incident.

SafeWork NSW reminded businesses of their duty to identify hazards and manage risks to health and safety in accordance with the provisions of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 and Work Health and Safety Regulation 2017.

In a statement the regulator said to consider ‘reasonably practicable’ control measures to manage the risks associated with working under an elevated truck cabin, which includes developing safe systems of work that makes sure:

  • Only a competent person carries out maintenance work under the cabin, according to the manufacturer’s instructions
  • A mechanical stop, such as a safety bar, or suitably designed prop or stand, is locked in position so that it won't move accidentally
  • Controls for raising and lowering the cabin are clearly marked and can’t be accidentally operated
  • The system is isolated – eg the truck is turned off and the keys removed from the ignition
  • Hydraulics and mechanical parts are regularly inspected and maintained by a competent person
  • Worn or damaged parts are repaired or replaced
  • Workers are trained.


Businesses must also provide the necessary information, training and supervision to all your workers so they can perform their work safely.

Training should also be an ongoing process and, when young workers are involved, make sure you consider their:

  • Work experience and previous training
  • Ability to cope with unexpected, stressful situations
  • Knowledge and understanding of workplace rights and responsibilities
  • Willingness to speak up when they have an issue.