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Meat company fined $400,000 after stag kills stockman working on Victorian farm

A meat company has been fined $400,000 after a stockman was killed by a stag.

The experienced stockman was drafting and weighing cattle in an enclosed yard in 2017 when he was attacked by surprise by the stag, which was in a highly agitated state.

The man was later found dead.

A Victorian County Court jury in October convicted Midfield Meat on one charge of failing to provide a safe working environment.

The jury found it was reasonably practicable for the meat processing company to have a system in place that ensured another person was there to provide help in an emergency.

Judge Michael O’Connell sentenced Midfield Meat on Tuesday, imposing a $400,000 fine.

WorkSafe Victoria executive director of health and safety Narelle Beer said being crushed or trampled by cattle was the second most common cause of deaths on Victorian farms.

“This incident is a tragic example of the dangers faced by those working in agriculture and why employers and workers always need to be thinking about safety first,” Dr Beer said.

“Whatever job you or your workers are doing on a farm, please consider what could go wrong, discuss it with your workers and take action to make sure you’re providing a safe workplace.”

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