A construction worker had his leg sliced open by an unguarded angle grinder which lurched towards him while he was using it to cut a stone block, magistrates have learned.
The company responsible for his safety was prosecuted for breaking the law because the tool’s blade was left exposed and ultimately led to the horrific work accident.
The worker, 27-year-old Sam Ashford from Sheffield, was unable to complete routine tasks for several months due to the severity of the workplace injury.
He needed 12 stitches to the wound and has not returned to work in the construction industry.
HSE found the angle grinder did not have a guard attached to it, which left the blade completely exposed. Ecclesall Developments failed to check if Mr Ashford could use the tool correctly, or to give him suitable protective equipment.
Ecclesall Developments Ltd appeared before magistrates in Sheffield and admitted breaking section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act.
It was fined £8,000 and told to pay court costs of £8,985.
Health and Safety Executive inspector John Dutton said: “The incident was entirely avoidable had Ecclesall Developments adopted some simple solutions such as providing suitable cutting equipment and adequate training in safe cutting practices.
“Instead, no consideration was given by the company to how the task was to be carried out and no checks were made on the abilities of their employee in using an angle grinder.”
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