Glenn Richard Newport was so fit and muscular people used to say he resembled General Grievous, the physically imposing Star Wars character.
But despite his body mass, the popular fly-in fly-out worker was unable to endure exposure to excessive heat on a Queensland coal seam gas project site in January 2013.
Coroner John Hutton delivered his findings into the 38-year-old’s death, which he determined was the result of a cardiac arrest following exposure to extremely hot conditions.
“His death should be, in itself, a call for far more detailed and effective policies within the heavy construction industry,” he wrote.
He recommended the introduction of an industrywide code of practice to prevent and manage heat injuries “as a matter of urgency” and include provisions for night-based and a stipulated cut-off temperature at which work must cease.
Measurable, objective criteria should also be set within the code to help determine when someone should be evacuated to a hospital, he said.
Notably, the coroner also ruled out Mr Newport’s use of muscle-building supplements as playing any part in his death.
Mr Newport worked for contractor McConnell Dowell, which was employed by Santos. On the day of his death a safety officer had visited, as he did periodically, to distribute water and ice blocks.
Mr Hutton accepted the McConnell Dowell safety procedures could have been better but rejected the submission they were simply a compliance measure and not taken seriously.