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Health & Safety / April 20, 2021

Zero-turn Mower Incident – Neck Laceration

Event Title: Zero-turn Mower Incident – Neck Laceration
Event date: 13 March 2021
Event location: DMS

Event Description:
13 March 2021, approx. 0830 hours, a contractor’s worker was using a Zero-turn mower to mow underneath a canopy. A broken wire with a wire tightening claw attached at the end, has caught the worker, dragging the claw around the workers neck leaving a 10 cm laceration. 

Initial Actions Taken:

  • Ambulance was called 111, worker was airlifted to Tauranga hospital, had surgery late Saturday Afternoon.
  • DMS notified.
  • Worksafe notified. Accident site released by Worksafe during phone conversation.
  • Claw was removed and the wire was repaired.

Lessons and Recommendations:

  • Investigation completed.
  • Claws in line with this incident site were checked, all were secure.
  • Adjacent wires were visually checked, no obvious damaged / stressed wire sighted.
  • Monitor wires within the orchard, with regular inspections and note any repairs.
  • Investigate safety devices for Zero-turn mowers.
  • Produce a mowing hazards awareness booklet from the mower operator’s perspective, to be distributed to orchard managers, (and be realerted every autumn), as orchard inspections are less frequent once the crop and vine work is completed.

Claw behind mower

Injury after surgery