Failure to heed warnings results in tragic accident

When an accident in 2007 left one man dead his employers identified the need for a written safe system of work. Early the next year, an external health and safety consultant worked on a risk assessment and an action plan, but no action was taken.

Just one year after the first tragic accident, another worker from a different site fell victim to a similar accident. When the hand-fed press he was working on suffered a misfeed, the man climbed onto a moveable platen to remove the waste. The platen activated while he was still on it, crushing the man against the fixed press. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Inspectors found that the employee has not been provided with appropriate health and safety training for working with this type of machine and that they had failed to provide a written safe system of work for dealing with machinery operating problems.

It was also found that despite the previous accident and the subsequent risk assessment, nothing had been done to prevent a similar accident from occurring. The company was fined a massive £80,000 and ordered to pay costs of almost £40,000.