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KFC Fined After Teen Worker Suffered Serious Burns

KFC have been fined over $100,000 after a 16-year-old employee suffered severe burns after slipping and falling into a vat of cooking oil at an Adelaide fast-food outlet.

The 51-litre vat of oil was left behind by a 17-year-old worker who was responsible for training staff.

Magistrate Stephen Lieschke found the fast-food outlet failed to provide and maintain safe practices for cleaning its industrial sized cooker. 

“KFC’s business model relies on child workers to use commercial volumes of dangerously hot oil and, in this case, relied on another legal child to train a new employee with insufficient safety guidance,” Mr Lieschke said.

“Such young workers are necessarily inexperienced, despite their intelligence and good work ethics, and so need greater protection than adults.”

KFC pleaded guilty to the offence and faced a fine of up to $1.5 million. It had no prior convictions.

The incident occurred at the Eastwood KFC in May 2015. Mr Lieschke said that the oil's temperature would have exceeded 108 degrees.

The teen, who returned to work at KFC, suffered burns to 9 per cent of his body.

The company made a voluntary compensation payment of $15,000 to the 16-year-old and has since changed its cleaning process “company-wide.” 

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