A court has heard how safety failings by a national recycling firm led to a worker losing his arm.
Philip Grace, 43, had to have part of his right arm amputated after it became trapped in a conveyor belt that he was maintaining at Recresco Ltd’s Manisty Wharf site in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, early last year.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) said the accident at work could have been avoided had the company put in place a safe system of work.
Severed above wrist
Mr Grace’s safety glove got caught on a moving conveyor belt on the glass sorting machine, Liverpool Crown Court was told.
His arm was pulled into the machine and severed from above the wrist. Surgeons were unable to reattach his hand, leaving the father-of-one with limited mobility. He also suffers from constant pain as a result of the extensive surgery to repair his arm.
Recresco Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 2 and 3 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and was fined £50,000 and ordered to pay costs of £21,625.70.
HSE found that the company did not have a safe system of work in place, while there was insufficient information, instruction or training relating to the conveyors, despite the known dangers of using them.
The firm also failed to assess the risks associated with working on moving conveyor belts and it did not ensure the machinery across their site was properly guarded. This put their own and agency workers at risk.
Source: Health and Safety Executive
Date Published: June 23, 2015
Author: Jonathan Brown