An assistant farm manager from Norwich lost all his fingers and thumb of his left hand when it became caught in machinery.

Norwich Magistrates’ Court heard how the farm manager was operating a firewood processing machine, which consisted of a circular saw, log splitter and conveyer. In the course of splitting a log, the worker’s left hand became caught between the log and the splitting wedge, and all the fingers and the thumb on the hand were severed.

An investigation by the HSE into the incident which occurred on 13 February 2014 found that the machine which had recently been supplied, did not comply with the relevant British standard and it was not safe to use.

Ryetec Industrial Equipment Limited, of Town Green Lane, Settrington, Malton, North Yorkshire, who supplied the machine in Great Britain, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 6(1)(a) HSWA 1974 (failed to ensure safe design and construction of work equipment), and was fined £14,000 and ordered to pay costs of £4,441.

Metal Agricola S.R.L, of Via Michelini, Levaldigi, Italy, who manufactured the machine, pleaded guilty to breaching section 6(1)(a) HSWA 1974, and was fined £14,000 and ordered to pay costs of £8,099.