Port death: Unions call for health and safety review

Photo / Dianne Manson.
Photo / Dianne Manson.

Unions are calling for a health and safety review at the Port of Lyttelton after the second death there within a month.

A watersider died yesterday on board a fertiliser vessel about midday. Details have not yet emerged into how the man died.

The incident follows the death of a contractor at the port in late November after he was pinned between a logging truck and a forklift.

Maritime Union New Zealand (MUNZ) national secretary Joe Fleetwood said they would be calling for a meeting with health and safety delegates, management of all port employers, the union and Worksafe officials.

There were concerns that congestion could be a contributing factor to health and safety issues in the port since the 2011 earthquake, Mr Fleetwood said.

Rail and Maritime Transport Union general secretary Wayne Butson said safety at the port needed serious attention following the latest incident.

"Our sympathy goes to the family of the worker who lost their life yesterday. This will be heart wrenching for them as they prepare for Christmas without a loved one, as it will for the worker's friends and workmates.''

The port needed to work with unions to review their systems, Mr Butson said.

"There are concerns from workers that the port is working beyond capacity and available space. This needs to be addressed quickly, and we support MUNZ's efforts to get everyone around the table on this matter urgently.''


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