Shipping container incident - 25 September

This incident information release outlines how to lift and transport shipping containers safely.

A 67-year-old man suffered fatal injuries when crushed between containers at Port Botany. He was working near a forklift carrying a 12-metre long shipping container, when the container hit a stationary container, causing it to slide and trap the man between it and a nearby stack of containers.

Forklift involved in incident
Empty container handler, similar to one used in incident

The investigation

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

Safety information

Consider ‘reasonably practicable’ control measures to manage the risk of lifting and transporting shipping containers.

Make sure:

  • the site has adequate space and light to operate plant safely around the containers
  • the environmental conditions – heat, cold, rain, wind, ventilation – don’t hinder safety
  • exclusion zones are established and maintained around containers and mobile plant, to protect workers from falling objects and moving plant - as set out in your traffic management plan
  • plant and equipment is fit for purpose, inspected and properly maintained, in accordance with manufacturer’s recommendations
  • operators are competent and hold the relevant high risk work licence for the work they are doing, such as the operating reach stackers, forklifts or cranes.

Further information

Download a PDF of this release

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