WorkSafe prosecutes workers for planking

UPDATE 12.19pm 8 September 2011:

TWO men who planked at work and posted the photos on Facebook have been fined $1500 each and escaped conviction in a landmark court case today.Former workmates, Stewart Kift, 49, and 28-year-old Cameron Denbesten, were charged under the Occupational Health and Safety Act for not taking reasonable care for themselves and others in their workplace.

 

Mr Denbesten posted four photos on his Facebook page of himself and Mr Kift planking on a forklift and a painting booth in their workplace on May 16.

The two men were working for Ebara Pumps, in Bayswater, when they took the photos.

The court was told WorkSafe was tipped off to the photos by a member of the public and Mr Kift and Mr Denbesten were interviewed by WorkSafe officers just four days later.

Both pleaded guilty to the charges and said the behavior was "pure stupidity" when interviewed.

Magistrate Max Cashmore said he took into account the character references provided for the two men and their financial situations when determining the penalty.

Worksafe prosecutor Patrick McQuillen said the case was not about planking but about workplace safety.

A spokesman for Ebara Pumps, who did not wish to be named, said he was not aware of the behaviour before seeing the photos.

"The fact that they're no longer employed is comment enough," he said.