Mine worker claims $1.9m for wrist injury on the job
A CENTRAL Queensland mine worker has had her $1.9 million claim described as "trivial" and "excessive" by the workplace defendants of the case.
Batchfire Callide Management Pty Ltd and labour and employment agency company WorkPac Pty Ltd are being sued by Brianna Roughan, 22, of Hunter Valley, NSW.
The claim is for damages for breach of common law duty and negligence for an incident at Callide coal mine, 20km northeast of Biloela.
The case was filed on January 8 to the Supreme Court of Rockhampton by Justin Hoolihan of Rees R and Sydney Jones.
The incident occurred on February 13, 2018, between 9.30pm and 10pm.
The statement of claim alleges Ms Roughan was directed by Batchfire Callide to drive a Hitachi EH4 electric dump truck on the "circuit" towards the 0215/16 dump.
As she was driving, the fire suppression system alarm activated on the truck.
Ms Roughan claims she attempted to manually activate the fire suppression system from the cabin of the truck.
She removed the safety pin on the fire extinguisher and used the base of her left hand to push down on the red manual actuator button but it did not activate or illuminate.
She tried to push down again on the button more forcefully, unsuccessfully, when she felt pain in her left wrist.
Ms Roughan sustained a triangular fibrocartilage tear of the wrist. It is claimed she had surgery and may be required to have further surgical or medical treatment.
It is claimed Batchfire Callide failed to provide a safe place of work, safe system, provide adequate training and exposed Ms Roughan to risk of injury.
It is further alleged maintenance was not carried out on the fire suppression system in the truck.
Ms Roughan is suing WorkPac for $924, 759 which includes $15,600 in general damages for pain, suffering and loss of amenities of life.
Batchfire Callide is being sued for $1,047,847.
Ms Roughan is claiming $99,936 in past economic loss and $650,000 for future economic loss, which she is seeking from both defendants.
A defence was filed by Hoopgood Ganim Lawyers on behalf of WorkPac on February 5.
WorkPac claims Ms Roughan was provided with proper and adequate assistance and a safe system of work.
It further claims Batchfire Callide was responsible for the "development, implementation and supervision of the systems of work at the work site".
WorkPac denies the allegations in the statement of claim and states Ms Roughan was instructed on the automated fire suppression system by Batchfire Callide.
WorkPac denies the sum of $15,600 for general damages as it is "contrary to the medical evidence".
A defence was filed by Colin Biggers and Paisley Lawyers on February 11 for Batchfire Callide.
They claim the allegations submitted by Ms Roughan in the statement of claim are "untrue, not properly particularised, vague, oppressive and liable to be struck out".
Batchfire Callide admits Ms Roughan worked under its direction, but WorkPac also controlled what work was conducted, when, where, the manner, and the plant, equipment and tools used.
Batchfire Callide admits Ms Roughan suffered the wrist injury but denies it occurred in the way Ms Roughan alleges in the statement of claim.
Batchfire Callide called the claim "trivial and caused no compensable loss and damage, manifestly excessive in the circumstances and not supported by the whole of the evidence".
It denies the claim for money and states Ms Roughan will not require future treatment, has not suffered economic loss and the damages claimed are excessive.