Auckland Mayor Phil Goff has announced an independent review of health and safety at Ports of Auckland following the death of a worker by a container on board a ship.
Father of seven Palaamo Kalati, aged 31, a lasher, died in the incident on a ship at the Fergusson Container Terminal on August 30.
Kalati was fondly known as Amo to friends, and was a member of the Bay Roskill Rugby League Premier team in 2012.
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The club said on its Facebook page that he was a player who "played extremely tough" and always "gave his all".
The death is also being investigated by Maritime NZ rather than WorkSafe because the incident happened on board a ship.
Today, Goff said "the death is a tragedy we do not want to see repeated".
"This is why Auckland Council will be launching an independent investigation into health and safety practices at Ports of Auckland.
"While Ports of Auckland is a commercial entity with its own board, and ensuring the health and safety of workers is legally the responsibility of the Port's board, council as the shareholder wants to ensure that health and safety provisions are fit for purpose and that adequate health and safety practices are being followed.
"The board has confirmed it is fully supportive and Ports of Auckland will cooperate with all aspects of the independent review."
Ports of Auckland board chair Liz Coutts said: "The death of a stevedore late last month was devastating for his family, friends and workmates, and for the whole Ports of Auckland team.
"The wellbeing of our staff is paramount and POAL will cooperate fully with the independent review."
Goff said, "While Maritime New Zealand has responsibility for health and safety on water, Worksafe is responsible for incidents on land. This means there has been no across-the-board look at health and safety to see if there are systemic problems.
"Incidents in recent years, including the death of two workers and one serious injury are a serious cause for concern to me and other councillors.
"An independent review to examine the causes of the incidents is necessary to determine whether there is a pattern of failure in the health and safety measures that are in place at the port."
The review's terms of reference are currently being finalised by Auckland Council, with the independent reviewer or panel to be appointed shortly by the Council.
The costs for the review will be met by Ports of Auckland. The review is expected to be completed by the end of the year and will allow for stakeholder submissions.