Sunday, 18 March 2018

York House (Meat Products) Limited fined £110,567 after fall whilst adjusting racking

York House (Meat Products) Limited was fined £110,567 (inc.costs) for safety breaches after a worker was injured whilst adjusting storage racking.

The circumstances were:
  • The company required the height of shelves on storage racking to be adjusted.
  • The company failed to adequately manage the risks associated with working at height. 
  • No safe system of work was in place.
  • Employees were not aware of the dangers associated with climbing storage racking.
  • On 12 April 2016, an employee was instructed to adjust the height of shelves on storage racking with the assistance of co-workers.
  • To enable them to reposition the top shelves of the racking the workers climbed up onto one of the lower crossbars 
  • This crossbar gave way underneath them
  • One of the workers fell, hitting his head on the racking before landing on the floor. 
  • The dislodged crossbar fell from a height of 3.2m, hitting the employee on the back of the head and shoulders.
  • The injured individual suffered soft tissue damage to his right shoulder and required physiotherapy for several months. He was also unable to work for two months.

The HSE inspector said:
“This incident could have been prevented had York House Meat Products provided a risk assessment or a safe system of work for the task in hand. Employees should be made aware of the risks associated with climbing storage racking.”

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