Worker in second Kwinana refinery incident

Ben White with his children Neiva, baby Benjamin and Dolce with wife Elizabeth.
Ben White with his children Neiva, baby Benjamin and Dolce with wife Elizabeth.

THE Department of Mines and Petroleum has confirmed that a second serious incident occurred at Alcoa⿿s Kwinana refinery almost two weeks before worker Benjamin White died after a fall.

On Friday November 13, a boilermaker was working on an elevated work platform when a metal structure dislodged, trapping his head inside a thickener vessel.

Department resources safety director Andrew Chaplyn said it took some time to extract the worker.

He suffered caustic burns in the incident and spent four days in hospital before being discharged.

An Alcoa spokeswoman said the contractor was injured while undertaking maintenance work and was treated for caustic burns in hospital.

The incident occurred only 12 days before Mr White, a contractor from New Zealand, fell to his death while working at considerable height.

Mr White’s workmates have organised an event to raise funds for his family on December 18 at Alcoa social club. The event, which will include live music from some of his workmates, will start at 7.15pm. Sponsors or donations for raffles or silent auctions are welcome. Call 0431 189 519.

Mr White is survived by a wife and young children. In a week, more than $57,000 has been raised through a Go Fund Me page for the White family.