A young worker has been unable to return to work since being hit by a heavy metal frame as he walked across a factory floor a year ago.
Carlisle Magistrates’ Court heard the serious accident at work occurred at Tweddle Fabrications Ltd’s factory at Kirkbride near Wigton in Cumbria on February 27 2014.
The company, which trades as Tweddle Engineering, was fined £12,000 and ordered to pay costs of £501 after admitting it breached the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations.
Magistrates were told the 21-year-old worker, who lives in Carlisle and does not want to be named, suffered multiple leg and foot fractures when he was struck by a partly-built trailer chassis weighing almost two tonnes.
The chassis was being lifted by a pair of forklift trucks and hit the man, who was not involved in the work, when it swung out of control.
The court heard a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation had established that despite the complicated nature of the procedure the firm had failed to plan it properly.
Worker’s life ‘put at risk’
The HSE said measures should have been implemented to keep other employees at a safe distance when the frame was being lifted. Magistrates were told that there should also have been someone supervising the work.
Following the court case Steven Boyd, an inspector with the HSE, said the injured worker was still having trouble walking nearly 12 months on.
He said while the lift had put the man’s life at risk the accident could easily have been avoided and should serve as a warning to other companies.
The inspector said the firm had failed to meet its legal obligation to make sure the work was carried out safely and properly planned and supervised.
Source: Health and Safety Executive
Date Published: February 27, 2015
Author: Jonathan Brown