DEUTZ AUSTRALIA PTY LTD V SKILLED ENGINEERING LTD & ANOR
Supreme Court of Victoria – 25 June 2001
Skilled Engineering supplied their employee, Mr. Sutton, to Deutz to provide qualified forklift services.
In the performance of his work, Mr. Sutton reversed a forklift along a main aisle at Deutz’ warehouse with the mast of the forklift in an elevated position contrary to the requirements of Deutz and general forklift safety requirements. In the event, the mast of the forklift struck a beam in its path causing shelving to collapse upon which were stored diesel motors of various sizes. As a result Deutz lost goods to the amount of $369,000.
Whether it was a term of the contract between Skilled and Deutz that the driver would perform his duties without negligence and with the reasonable competence of a qualified forklift driver. Whether Skilled was vicariously liable for the negligence of Mr. Sutton Whether Deutz was a consumer for the purposes of s4B of the Trade Practices Act (“TPA”)and if so whether Deutz could rely upon s74 of the TPA which provides that there should be implied into the agreement a term that the services would besupplied with due skill and care.
Whether Mr. Sutton was liable under s.66 of the Insurance Contracts Act 1984 (“ICA”)