Glossop Carton and Print Limited, a packaging manufacturer, was ordered to pay over £125,000 in fi nes and costs following a guilty plea to health and safety breaches that led to the death of a worker.
The decision in December 2010 related to an incident in 2006 in which maintenance worker, Clive Hall, suffered fatal injuries while working on the inside of a ‘cut and crease’ machine. The machine was switched on by an operator while Mr Hall was inside, causing a fatal blow to Mr Hall’s head.
HSE commented that the accident was easily avoidable and that the simple procedure of cutting the power supply to the machine would have prevented the death.
In a separate case, Elliot Absorbent Products Limited, a Rochdale food manufacturer, was fi ned £27,500 on 7 January 2011 for an incident in which an employee was dragged into a laminator machine. In that case, the manufacturer had disabled infra-red equipment designed to stop the machine when approached. The company had also been served with three Improvement Notices relating to machine guards prior to the incident.
The operation and maintenance of work equipment and machinery is covered by the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER). Employers have duties under the regulations to ensure that equipment can be isolated from all sources of energy and that emergency stop controls are fi tted if appropriate.