The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has successfully prosecuted a Leicester based firm specialising in waste recycling.
The case which was presented to Leicester Magistrates Court revealed that a 22 year old male employee was clearing a blockage on a faulty cardboard bailing machine.
While doing so, the worker’s leg became trapped between the static and moving parts of the machinery. The fire brigade were called to help free the employee.
The court was told that the employee sustained significant injuries which required three operations, muscle and skin grafts and metalwork inserted to his knees and ankles to strengthen damaged bones.
The HSE revealed that the company had failed to maintain the machinery and although protective guards were present on the device, they did not operate effectively. Additionally, there were no safe systems of work on site.
The court fined £12,000 and ordered to pay costs of £3,577 after pleading guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974.
After the case was heard, Berian Price from the HSE stated:
“Incidents arising from dangerous parts of machinery are unfortunately commonplace despite freely available guidance. Around 12 people a year are killed and a further 40,000 injured due to incidents involving machinery.”
Guidance of the safe use of machinery can be found at http://www.hse.gov.uk/work-equipment-machinery/