Sunday, 26 October 2014

Advance Display fined £17,677 after worker's ankle was crushed in a woodworking machine

Advance Display Ltd, of Loughborough was fined £17,677 (Inc. costs) after a worker's ankle was crushed.
The circumstances were:
  • For certain tasks on the machine, the operators used to have a mobile remote-controlled pendant in their hand to control the machine. 
  • However, the pendant had been broken for more than three and a half years and Advance Display Ltd had never replaced nor repaired it.
  • On 28 January 2013, a worker was trying to flush lubricant through the grease unit on the machine.
  • He had one foot on the floor and the other on a base plate of the computer-controlled machine.
  • Because the pendant did not work he asked a colleague to turn the machine on.
  • The colleague could not see whether or not the worker was clear of the machine.
  • As it had already been programmed, it immediately moved forward, crushing his foot between the base plate and the moving bed.

The HSE inspector said:
“The incident was entirely preventable and stemmed from a failure to keep the remote control pendant – a relatively inexpensive piece of equipment – in good repair and efficient working order. This, coupled with the lack of a safe system of work, led to a man needlessly suffering an extremely severe injury. The company was grossly negligent and failed to consider the risk to employees engaged in certain tasks on the machine.”

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