Friday, 26 September 2014

Linde fined over £9,000 after forklift truck falls from ramp

Linde Creighton Ltd., a fork lift truck company was fined £9,144 (inc. costs) after a worker fractured a vertebra in his back when one of its vehicles fell from a lorry.
The circumstances were:
  • On 21 October 2013 Terence Jones was unloading the forklift at their West Bromwich factory by driving it down a ramp.
  • The ramp had not been securely attached to the trailer using both the chains it came with. Although one of the two chains had been attached, the other was left off as overhanging bushes made it difficult to get to the far side of the ramp.
  • The company failed to risk assess the activity and monitor and enforce the safe system of work to ensure staff used all the safety critical features when attaching the ramp.
  • The ramp dislodged from the trailer, causing it and the forklift to drop straight down. 
  • The truck fell around 1.2 metres, landing upright on all four wheels.

The HSE inspector said:
“Mr Jones had used the ramp at least twice a day to unload fork lift truck deliveries since the company bought it in 2008. The ramp manufacturer had provided instructions for its use, and safety warnings and precautions in the operating and maintenance manual clearly stated that unless restrained, the ramp could move away from the dock of the vehicle and that personnel could fall. The incident was therefore entirely foreseeable and preventable. Linde Creighton Ltd had a clear, easily achievable standard to meet but failed to achieve it, resulting in a painful injury to a member of staff.”

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