New Zealand’s Department of Labour says it has laid charges against two parties following the tunnel explosion in Auckland earlier this year that killed a worker. A mother-of-two, 48-year-old Canadian Philomen Gulland, was killed and six others injured in a massive blast which rocked the suburb of Onehunga in June.Ms Gulland and those injured were all working on the water tunnel for Auckland Council-owned Watercare and HEB Construction.
The Department of Labour says it has laid five charges under the Health and Safety Employment Act against two parties involved in the explosion, but would not reveal who the parties were, or what charges had been laid. “This investigation was the result of a tragic accident that claimed one life, and left others injured,” said John Howard, the department’s northern general manager. “Our investigation was very thorough and looked at whether the legal obligations were complied with, what caused the accident and what can be done to prevent this happening in the future.”