£500,000 fine for transport company after worker’s horrific injuries
A transport firm in Cheshire has landed in court after one of its employees sustained horrific injuries when she was crushed between two lorries.
Mrs Rose had been acting as a banksman, assisting a lorry driver to reverse park on a slope. As she was doing so the driver decoupled his trailer without engaging its parking brake, causing it to roll back and trap her between the two vehicles.
The 38-year-old suffered a punctured lung, 13 broken bones in her back, shoulders and ribs, a cardiac arrest and was in intensive care for ten days. She was left with head injuries, impaired vision and she required a tracheotomy – she also, needed to wear a body brace for four months and was confined to a wheelchair for some months although has since regained some mobility.
The court heard that Mrs Rose, who has a young son, was lucky to be alive after the accident.
An investigation into the incident found that TIP Trailer Services regularly allowed vehicles to park on a slope without the provision of chocks or similar devices. In addition to this, the company had no monitoring system to check whether drivers were applying their handbrakes properly.
What was the outcome?
TIP Europe Ltd was fined a total of £500,000 and ordered to pay a further £56,938 in costs after pleading guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, and.
HSE inspector, Elizabeth Hornsby, said:
“Mrs Rose suffered severe life-changing injuries. Her family was told
she would not survive the night but due to her level of physical
fitness and her sheer determination she has fought back and
is now on the road to recovery.
“It was common practice for drivers to park on a slope within the
compound, which should never have been allowed as it was
inevitable that sooner or later a driver would fail to
put on their handbrake. This totally avoidable
incident could and should have been prevented
with nothing more than common sense.”
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