Coroner finds "insufficient safety" on farmstay behind death
QUEENSLAND Coroner John Hutton has found there were insufficient safety systems in place at a Scenic Rim farmstay which contributed to the death of a man in 2011.
Nicholas Johnson, 47, was killed in a fire which occurred in a generator shed on July 31, 2011, at 'Cloudhill Farm' at Tarome near Warwick.
He was staying with a group of 18 family members and friends at the farmstay when he was killed.
Mr Johnson died from smoke inhalation due to fire after attempting to refuel a petrol generator located in a shed on the property.
The generator was used as a secondary source of power and was housed in a relatively closed shed with poor ventilation.
Mr Johnson had received a briefing from the manager of the property in relation to the operation of the generator and it was envisaged that he may need to refuel the generator during their stay.
However, he was given no instructions about the safe refuelling of the generator, nor was he given a copy of the generator operator's manual
The coroner found there were no fire extinguishers on the property and no access to a pressurised water source.
Mr Hutton, in handing down his finding on Friday, (Feb 07) was critical of the systems in place at the property.
"The portable petrol generator was housed in a poorly ventilated shed against the manufacturer's recommendation, which significantly increased the risk of fire," he said.
"The exit point within the generator shed in the event of a fire was inadequate as the main door was inwards opening and difficult to navigate around in an emergency."
Furthermore, Mr Hutton found that the government regulations for farmstays to ensure owners and managers take appropriate measures to manage the risk of fire and loss of life of guests are inadequate.
He recommended that relevant state and local government bodies consult with a view to considering regulating tourist accommodation such as farmstays from a fire safety perspective.