When people go to work on the Sunshine Coast, they do so expecting that every effort will have been made to ensure that they will be working in a safe environment. Of course, accidents do happen, but there are very strict laws that every company in Australia needs to follow to ensure and manage the health and safety of their employees. Risk consultants on the Sunshine Coast routinely visit warehouses, construction sites, management offices and other potentially dangerous places to ensure that the location is as safe as humanly possible.
As we mentioned earlier, though, accidents do happen, and what happens in the aftermath of these events often serves as a warning to other companies who might consider trying to get around the rules and regulations that are in place. One such example of this can be found by looking at what went down in the Sunshine Coast after a thermal energy storage tank exploded at the Sunshine Coast University Hospital back in 2015. Water and debris were sent flying in all directions, with some witnesses describing the event as being akin to a tsunami. Thankfully, no-one was hurt in the explosion, but the level of damage was still catastrophic.
All told, over 2.5 million liters of water was spilled in the accident, with cars and surrounding buildings damaged in the blast. It truly was a miracle that no-one was seriously hurt in the explosion, but it could have been a whole lot worse if the work crew at the construction site had not been sent home early that day. The tank was eventually replaced and inspected to ensure that it met proper standards. Initially, an investigation into the incident cleared Lendlease, the site developer, and Australasia Liquid Storage (ALS), the supplier of the tanks, from any wrongdoing, but things have changed dramatically since then.
It was initially thought that ALS were responsible for the explosion, and while they were cleared back then, the damage to their business was done, as no new orders came in after the incident. The blame has now fallen on the shoulders of Lindsay Consulting Ply Ltd., the company that designed the tanks. They have been accused of not meeting a specific health and safety standard, and could potentially be on the hook for millions of dollars in fines, not to mention potential jail time for the company owner. That company is now also out of business, but that will not stop the litigation going ahead.
The damage has been done in more ways than one, and while it was certainly a horrible event, it’s one that serves as a bit of a warning for other companies. They need to be sure that they do all they can to stay on the right side of the health and safety laws, which can be done by having risk consultants look at the business and put together a report that can help these companies ensure that their employees are working in a safe environment every single day.