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Charges laid following death of jockey

Among the claims, it’s alleged the racing club failed to ensure its sand trails were safe to use.

Saloon Park Pty Ltd has also been charged with failing to ensure its employees did not ride the sand trails track in the dark.

“The club has been charged with three alleged breaches of section 23(1) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act for failing to ensure, as far as reasonably practicable, people other than employees were not exposed to risks to their health and safety,” WorkSafe said in a statement on Monday.

“It was also charged with three alleged breaches of section 26(1) of the OHS Act for failing to ensure the workplace was safe and without risks to health.

“Saloon Park has been charged with one count each of failing to provide a system of work that was, so far as reasonably practicable, safe and without risks to health under section 21(2)(a) of the OHS Act and failing to ensure the workplace was safe and without risks to health under section 26(1) of the Act.”

A racing industry source told The Age the sand trails at Cranbourne were no longer open for use outside of daylight hours as a result of Claridge’s death.

Racing Victoria would not comment further on the WorkSafe charges on Monday.

“We note the charges issued by WorkSafe against the Cranbourne Turf Club and Saloon Park Pty Ltd,” a Racing Victoria spokesman said.

“As the matter is now before the courts, it would be inappropriate for Racing Victoria to comment on these charges.

“Mikaela was a popular young rider who is greatly missed by many within the industry. Our thoughts remain with her family and friends.”

Cranbourne Turf Club released a statement in the immediate aftermath of Claridge’s death, saying it would assist with a WorkSafe investigation.

“WorkSafe have commenced an investigation into the incident and the club will afford them every support in doing so,” the club’s chief executive, Neil Bainbridge, said at the time.

Cranbourne Turf Club has been contacted for comment.

A filing hearing is listed at the Melbourne Magistrates Court on March 17.

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