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Leeds firm in court after employee loses fingertips

Country Style Foods Ltd has been in court after one of its employees suffered serious injuries to his hand when it came into contact with the drive chain of a conveyor.

What happened?

The 26-year-old was tidying up after completing a job on a freezer at the firm’s premises in Benton Lane, when he slipped on the icy floor.

Instinctively he put out his right hand, in a bid to steady himself, but accidentally struck the drive chain of a moving conveyor, immediately slicing off the tips of two of his fingers.

He was off work for four weeks but has since been able to return to work.

An investigation into the incident found that the machine’s safety guard had been removed some time previously, leaving employees exposed to dangerous moving parts.

Additionally, the court heard that the ice on the floor was due to a problem with the freezer doors, leaving the area dangerously slippery for workers.

What was the outcome?

Country Style Foods Ltd, pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, and was fined £8,500 and ordered to pay £794 in costs.

HSE Inspector, Shuna Rank, said:

“This worker’s injuries should not and need not have happened. This incident
was easily preventable had Country Style Foods Ltd ensured safety
guards were in place on the machinery. The company should
also have taken steps to prevent the accumulation
of ice on the freezer floor.

“Guards and safety systems are there for a reason, and companies have a legal
duty of care to ensure they are properly fitted and
working effectively at all times.”

If you have been affected by an accident at work, and you would like expert advice, contact Hampson Hughes Solicitors today on 0800 888 6888 or email

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