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Warning to follow correct safety procedures

27 July 2009

The HSE is warning employers and their staff to be mindful of following the correct safety procedures when operating machinery and drills, following the prosecution of a Black Country firm.

Employers warned to follow correct safety procedures
Employers warned to follow correct safety procedures

On 25 June 2008, an employee at Stoke Forgings Dudley broke his wrist and thumb, dislocated a shoulder, required an extensive skin graft on his forearm, and also damaged nerves and tendons in his forearm after becoming entangled in machinery. The company was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £4,103 costs at Dudley Magistrates Court on 14 July 2009.

The company, which is based at Cochrane Road, Dudley, pleaded guilty to a breach of Regulation 3 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and a breach of Regulation 11 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998.

The court heard how the injured party was working on a 6-Spindle Drill when he became entangled in a neighbouring drill, after his clothing got caught up in the moving parts.

Prosecuting, HSE inspector Sarah Palfreyman said: “The worker should have been protected by fixed guards around the dangerous parts of the machinery and he was lucky to have escaped with the injuries he has. Drill-related injuries are still all too frequent and companies need to ensure proper risk assessments are carried out on machinery. In this case, if a suitable assessment had been undertaken, the need for an adequate guard would have been identified and the chance of an incident occurring would have been reduced, if not eliminated.

“HSE publishes Approved Codes of Practice, guidance and information leaflets with practical advice on machinery guarding – so there is no excuse for duty holders who don’t control risks and protect their employees.”

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