Zion Wildlife Park Companies Convicted for Death of Handler

Press Release – Department Of Labour

Zion Wildlife Park Companies Convicted for Death of Animal Handler Zion Wildlife Gardens Limited, has been ordered to pay reparations of $60,000 to the partner of the zoo keeper mauled to death by a tiger on 27 May 2009. Zion Wildlife Services … Zion Wildlife Park Companies Convicted for Death of Animal Handler

Zion Wildlife Gardens Limited, has been ordered to pay reparations of $60,000 to the partner of the zoo keeper mauled to death by a tiger on 27 May 2009.

Zion Wildlife Services Limited was contracted by Zion Wildlife Garden to employ the staff and was not fined or ordered to pay reparations because it has no assets, no employees and has not been in business for a year.

“When Mr Mncube was fatally attacked the two un-trained adult tigers in the enclosure were not isolated and it is simply unacceptable that a handler was permitted to enter an enclosure in those circumstances,” says Rod Gibbon, Whangarei Service Manager for the Department of Labour.

“This prosecution should serve as a serious warning to employers that irrespective of what the work place is, they have a responsibility to ensure a safe working environment for their employees,” says Mr Gibbon.

ENDS Notes to Editor • Zion Wildlife Services Limited pleaded guilty to one charge under Section 6 of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 which states that every employer shall take all practicable steps to ensure the safety of employees while at work; and in particular shall take all practicable steps to— o (a) provide and maintain for employees a safe working environment; and o (b) provide and maintain for employees while they are at work facilities for their safety and health; and o (c) ensure that plant used by any employee at work is so arranged, designed, made, and maintained that it is safe for the employee to use; and o (d) ensure that while at work employees are not exposed to hazards arising out of the arrangement, disposal, manipulation, organisation, processing, storage, transport, working, or use of things— (i) in their place of work; or (ii) near their place of work and under the employer’s control; and (e) develop procedures for dealing with emergencies that may arise while employees are at work. • Zion Wildlife Gardens Limited pleaded guilty to one charge under Section 16(1)(b)(iv) of the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 which states: (1) A person who controls a place of work (other than a home occupied by the person) must take all practicable steps to ensure that no hazard that is or arises in the place harms— o (a) people in the vicinity of the place (including people in the vicinity of the place solely for the purpose of recreation or leisure): o (b) people who are lawfully at work in the place— (i) as employees of the person; or (ii) as contractors engaged by the person; or (iii) as subcontractors to a contractor engaged by the person; or (iv) as employees of a contractor or subcontractor to whom subparagraph (ii) or subparagraph (iii) applies. (2) A person who controls a place of work (other than a home occupied by the person) must take all practicable steps to ensure that no hazard that is or arises in the place harms people— o (a) who are in the place with the express or implied consent of the person; and o (b) who— (i) have paid the person (directly or indirectly) to be there or to undertake an activity there; or (ii) are there to undertake activities that include buying or inspecting goods from whose sale the person derives or would derive (directly or indirectly) any gain or reward. (3) A person who— o (a) controls a place of work (other than a home occupied by the person); and o (b) knows of any significant hazard that— (i) is in, or is likely to arise in, the place of work; and (ii) arises from work that is being carried on, or has been carried on, for gain or reward in the place of work; and (iii) would not, in the ordinary course of events, be reasonably expected to be in, or to be likely to arise in, a place of work of that type; and o (c) either— (i) expressly authorises any other person to be in the place of work; or (ii) has personally received oral advice that any other person will, under the authority of any enactment, be working in the place of work; and o (d) is not obliged, in relation to that other person, to comply with subsection (1) or subsection (2)— must take all practicable steps to warn that other person of the significant hazard. (4) Except in the case of the practicable steps required by this section to be taken in relation to any person described in subsection (2) or subsection (3)(c)(i), this section does not impose on any person who controls a place of work any duty in respect of any person who is in the place of work solely for the purpose of recreation or leisure. (5) The warning required to be given to a person to whom subsection (3)(c)(i) applies— o (a) must be given to that person at the time at which the express authority to be in the place of work is given to that person; but o (b) if the express authority is given in respect of a group of persons or a body of persons, whether corporate or unincorporate, it is sufficient if the warning is given at that time to a representative or member of that group or body of persons. (6) The oral advice required by subsection (3)(c)(ii) must be given by the person who will be working in the place of work or by that person’s employer. Section 16: substituted, on 18 March 1998, by section 2 of the Health and Safety in Employment Amendment Act 1998 (1998 No 3). • The Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992 is available online: http://legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1992/0096/latest/DLM278829.html

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