Meatworker skewered

A ROCKHAMPTON meatworker's career was cut short when three razor-sharp knives plunged into his neck, collarbone and left hand in a freak accident at the JBS meatworks.

Former slaughterman Steven Charles Larson is seeking more than $750,000 in damages from the company after the incident at the Nerimbera abattoir in 2009.

The court claim against JBS Pty Ltd states the 41-year-old man's wounds have not only left him with ongoing neck and hand pain, but it has also destroyed his career and any chances of further employment as a manual labourer.

According to the documents lodged with the Supreme Court in Rockhampton, the Mount Morgan man was dutifully preparing for his shift by sharpening his knives in the "kill floor" anteroom, directly below a set of stairs leading to the floor, at 5.45am on July 14.

A colleague was walking up the stairs when she dropped her knife kit and three knives fell and speared Mr Larson, the claim states.

Mr Larson is suing for the loss of his weekly pay packet, alleged to be $800, for the past three years and for the next 25 years - reaching more than $500,000.

He is also seeking compensation for his past and continuing medical expenses.

The claim states Mr Larson has "endured and continues to endure pain, suffering and diminution of the enjoyment of the amenities of life".

It states the company is "vicariously liable" for the actions of Mr Larson's colleague, along with failing to provide a safe workplace by ensuring proper barricades would stop falling knives hitting employees.

The Morning Bulletin was yesterday unsuccessful in attempting to contact Mr Larson or JBS Pty Ltd.



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