A member engaged a contractor to conduct maintenance work on their premises. The lighting at the local government property where the contractor was working was defective or poorly designed such that after a set time, the lights would automatically turn off. Whilst the contractor was carrying out their work, the lights turned off and they fell leading to a significant injury.
As the entity in control of the premises, the City owed a ‘duty of care’ to the contractor to ensure they were not exposed to unreasonable risks. In this situation, the defective lighting design/system was deemed to be an unreasonable risk.
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During the investigation, we found that the lighting was originally designed by another contractor and not by the member themselves. Unfortunately, the local government did not retain any records of the contractor involved and therefore, we had no ability to join them as a party or bring them into the court proceedings and assign all or if not part of the liability to them.
As a result of the defective lighting design/system on the member’s premises, the contractor suffered an injury and the member was liable to pay damages to the injured contractor. LGIS negotiated a settlement with the contractor involved.
In 2022/23 LGIS received over 2,300 claims and paid out over $43.8 million. It’s a similar story most years with LGIS handling more than 2,000 claims across property, liability, workers’ compensation, motor and volunteer bushfire fighter protection.
An outside worker in his early 40s sustained a significant workplace injury to his lower back at a local government owned/ operated facility while trying to assist a ratepayer who had attended the facility.