SA Cleanaway case underway
A court has heard waste management company Cleanaway failed to properly train a driver involved in a fatal crash during his first week on the job.
Comcare is prosecuting Cleanaway over seven counts of failing to comply with a health and safety duty.
It comes after the death of a driver who was driving a truck down Adelaide's South Eastern freeway for the first time when he lost control on a descent in August 2014.
Two people died when the truck ploughed into their stationary cars, and the driver lost a leg in the crash.
Cleanaway’s lawyers entered not guilty pleas in Adelaide Magistrates Court on Monday.
Prosecutor Justin Hannebery QC told the court it was the driver's first day driving a truck down the freeway, fifth day working at Cleanaway, and seventh day driving a truck on the road.
A risk management expert is expected to give evidence in the case, alleging Cleanaway had not properly assessed the driver’s ability to drive the truck on all routes and in all the trucks he would be expected to drive.
“The assessment of [the driver] was inappropriate in that it was conducted in an automated vehicle only,” Mr Hannebery said.
“Despite the fact that [the driver] had been assigned an automatic vehicle in the first two days of his employment, it was known that there were also manual vehicles in the fleet.
“It was reasonable to assume that, at some point in time, [the driver] would be required to drive one of those vehicles.”
Mr Hannebery said the case would focus on Cleanaway's risk management instead of the crash itself.
“The allegation is that there was a risk that existed in the workplace,” he said.
“The prosecution say that there was a reasonably practicable step for Cleanaway to take that would have reduced that risk or better managed that risk but they haven't taken it.”
A road safety expert who assessed the truck after the crash told the court the driver’s training and competency did not match the risk posed by the steep descent.