Recycling Firm Fined For Safety Failings

Man Forced To Miss Three Months Of Work Following Accident

20.11.2013

A man was forced to take more than three months off work after being involved in an occupational accident at a recycling facility.

The worker - who wishes to remain unnamed - suffered numerous leg injuries, including a fractured ankle, when a 100 kg steel beam fell on top of him.

Bolton-based J Doyle pleaded guilty to breaching the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 and was fined £2,000. The company was also ordered to pay £1,500 in prosecution costs.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the business had failed to thoroughly plan the movement of heavy beams around the site.

A forklift truck driver was attempting to hoist the metal into an empty skip so it could then be transported to a customer.

The employee - who was the delivery driver - was injured when the beam fell from the forks, crushing his left leg.

Although the incident occurred in July 2012, the man is still dealing with the long-term impact and now walks with a limp.

Following the hearing at Trafford Magistrates' Court, HSE inspector Emily Osborne said the risks involved in this type of work had been ignored.

"The injuries suffered by J Doyle's employee are still affecting him today, more than a year after the incident, and have caused him a considerable amount of pain," she commented.

Ms Osborne added that the recycling business has now changed its working practices to avoid a repeat of the accident.

"The company has now stopped using a forklift to lift steel beams and instead uses a HIAB crane on the back of a flatbed truck to deliver steel beams to customers," she continued.

Forklift trucks are involved in nearly a quarter of all workplace transport accidents, according to the HSE.