Carpenter Electrocuted on Construction Site Could have Been Saved, Coroner Says

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A coroner has found that the death of a young carpenter who was electrocuted in 2013 could have been prevented if different circuit breakers had been used.

The 25 year old Matthew Trent Ross was working for his friend’s roofing company when the incident occurred in July 2013 while working on a renovation and refurbishment project in Victoria Point.

He was electrocuted when he touched a metal scaffolding pole while his legs were on guttering at the time.

The Deputy State Coroner, John Lock said the mandatory fitting of residual current devices be proposed to key stakeholders before potentially being presented to the state government.  He stated that circuit breakers were designed to protect equipment from large voltages, while residual current devices check currents going in and out. It would have detected the leak from the damaged light fitting and could have saved Matthew Trent Ross.


Sixteen Year Old Inducted as Carpenter before Seven Metre Fall


The sixteen year old boy who fell seven metres down a staircase void and suffered serious injuries in October, was inducted as a carpenter the day before the terrible accident occurred.

There have since been questions raised about the supervision of youth on the site and other sites.

The young man was working on the site as part of a program by Master Builders, helping students at risk of dropping out by putting them into trade apprenticeships.

The teen apparently fell from a stepladder down a staircase void which resulted in serious injuries including a crushed shoulder and damaged vertebrae, requiring a metal rod to be put into his back.

The program is currently on hold as WorkSafe investigate the incident.

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