One of the UK’s largest manufacturers and suppliers of polythene plastic products has been fined thousands of pounds after an employee was injured in a workplace accident.
Total Polyfilm Ltd – a polythene film manufacturer – pleaded guilty to safety breaches at Huddersfield Magistrates’ Court after one of its workers trapped his hand while operating machinery in the firm’s Yorkshire plant in March 2014.
Following an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the court heard how an employee broke the little finger on his right hand and that the company had failed to adequately assess the risks or supervise the work to make sure it was being carried out correctly.
An ‘avoidable’ incident
The fracture occurred while the employee was working at Total Polyfilm Ltd.’s plant in Brighouse, West Yorkshire.
“This incident could so easily have been avoided by simply carrying out correct control measures and safe working practices,” HSE inspector Jacqueline Ferguson commented after the hearing.
The investigation concluded that Total Polyfilm Ltd had not fulfilled its statutory duty to adequately assess any associated risks of being injured when operating machinery at its plants.
Employees at the company were also operating the equipment incorrectly and the firm had failed to take action, the court heard.
Below required standards
Total Polyfilm Ltd of Walton Summit Estate, Bamber Bridge, Preston, Lancashire pleaded guilty at Huddersfield Magistrates’ Court to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
The court has fined the company £6,000 and ordered it to pay costs of £697 for its breach of the health and safety regulation.
Ms Ferguson added: “Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”
Source: Health and Safety Executive
Date Published: March 1, 2017
Author: Jonathan Brown