Whakaari Prosecution: Insights and Lessons (On Demand)

This On Demand was originally recorded on 11 June 2024.

The eruption of Whakaari was a profound event in New Zealand and the legal cases that followed stand as some of the most significant health and safety proceedings in New Zealand’s history. 

In this On Demand, experts intimately involved in the case will share firsthand accounts, explaining and analysing the various pre-trial, trial and sentencing judgments. They will also delve into the practical and legal implications of these decisions, providing invaluable insights into risk management and compliance – of interest for all lawyers practising or interested in this area.

Who Should Watch?

Employment Lawyers, Health & Safety Lawyers, HR Professionals, General Practitioners, Commercial Lawyers, In-house Lawyers.


Brett Harris
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Brett is a Barrister in the Britomart area, Auckland. Brett’s specialist area of health & safety defence work dates back to 1999. Over those 25 years, he has been involved with hundreds of cases including accident investigations, Maritime NZ and TAIC investigations, workplace prosecutions, Health & Safety trials, Coronial matters, private prosecutions, a number of successful Enforceable Undertakings and he has provided a range risk management advice for insurers / Directors / PCBUs / clients / Motorsport organisations. Brett is also the Convenor of The Law Association’s Health & Safety Law Committee and he acted for Whakaari Management Ltd (and others) in the immediate aftermath of the Whakaari eruption.

Grant Nicholson
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Grant Nicholson, Partner, Anthony Harper

Grant Nicholson is a partner at Anthony Harper in Auckland. With nearly 30 years’ legal experience, Grant has been involved in the investigations into many of New Zealand's worst workplace disasters, including the Whakaari/White Island volcano eruption and the Pike River mine explosions. 

Grant regularly helps clients with serious incident investigations and representation during interaction with regulators and the courts, as well as with health and safety compliance and governance. Grant is currently working on a range of cases arising from farming, forestry, infrastructure/construction, manufacturing, and transportation/logistics incidents. 

Garth Gallaway
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Garth Gallaway is one of New Zealand’s leading legal experts in Health & Safety. Garth acts for employers in investigations and prosecutions, both on direct instructions and through insurers. Additionally, he represents numerous clients and Boards of PCBUs, providing strategic health and safety advice. Garth has been involved in some of New Zealand’s highest-profile health and safety cases and coronial inquests, and provides strategic legal advice to leading corporates and boards on Health & Safety matters. He has extensive experience in aviation and marine cases and in investigations involving forestry, manufacturing, mining, tourism, construction, farming, roading, transport, medical issues and fishing.

Garth is recognised as a Leading Individual by Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2024 and as a Leading Lawyer by Chambers Asia Pacific 2024. 



CPD Hours: 1.00hr

Pricing Details

Ticket Price

Member: $105 GST

Non-Member: $150 GST