CQ meatworker’s $168k injury lawsuit for “extensive bending”

A LAKES Creek meatworker has filed a workplace injury lawsuit for $168,000 claiming “extensive bending” while on the kill floor led to a substantial spinal injury.

Layton King, Bouldercombe, 43, has filed to sue Teys Australia Central Queensland for $168,627.97.

The incident is claimed to have occurred between April 1 and October 26, 2016 when Mr King was “fronting” on the kill floor.

Mr King claims when he cut the beasts front legs he was required to bend extensively and repetitively to reach for tendons, which in turn put strain on his lower spine.

It is alleged Mr King had to “bend deeply” 300 times per shift, placing “exceptional repetitive forces on his lower back”.

This action allegedly led to chronic repetitive soft tissue injury to the spine including discs, pelvis joint injury and aggravation to pre-existing degenerative spinal changes.

While Mr King has a new job, he claims he earns a lower wage and now has a loss of $226 per week, equating to $115,180.80 in future economic loss.

The lawsuit was filed by David Lipke of Swanwick Murray Roche in April to the Rockhampton District Court.

A defence was filed on behalf of Teys by BTLawyers Brisbane and state Mr King’s claims are “inaccurate, incomplete and vague”.

Mr King claims he was not provided with sufficient rest breaks and/or time away from the work as to ensure rest and repair of the lower back.

Teys claim they provide sufficient breaks with a total of five breaks throughout the shift, equating to 65 minutes.

Teys rebutted in February 2016, due to significantly changed market conditions and reduced supply of cattle for processing, shifts were decreased to eight hours from 9.5 hours, they processed 1,215 head of cattle instead of 1,668 per day.

Teys further claim the bending required was for less than three seconds, was not heavy and did not require any substantial force.

The meatworks state Mr King’s lower back pain or any symptoms was not caused or contributed to by the alleged work tasks.

Teys also filed an offer to settle on April 22.



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