10 Dec 2009

$115,000 fine imposed for pipeline safety breaches

7:48 am on 10 December 2009

A fine of $115,000 for safety breaches has been imposed on a company building a new wastewater pipeline to serve Christchurch.

McConnell Dowell Construction was charged with failing to ensure the safety of its employees in October last year and again in January this year.

The company was also charged with acting without necessary maritime documents during the October incident and dangerous activity in the January incident.

McConnell Dowell personnel were aboard a barge while it was being towed. The charges were brought in the Christchurch District Court by Maritime New Zealand.

The October incident occurred just before a boat carrying two men went missing in stormy seas. They were working on the pipeline for a subcontractor, Heron Construction. Their bodies were later found.

Heron Construction admitted failing to ensure its employees safety and operating a boat without a safe ship management certificate. It will be sentenced on Monday.