Northumberland Farm Owners Prosecuted by HSE
The owners of a farm in Northumberland have been fined following an incident in which an employee suffered leg injuries.
On 4th August last year, two employees were building cattle troughs made from reinforced concrete panels at a farm in Northumberland. Both employees were using a telehandler with a fork attachment in order to lift the 1.5 tonne panels.
Mid and South East Northumberland Magistrates’ Court heard that the workers bound a hook and ended chain around the forks, attaching the hooks to the panels via lifting hoops. However, the employees realised that it would not be possible to move the telehandler boom through to the intended shed whilst the panel was also being lifted.
The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) told the court that the workers lowered the panel to the ground, intending to shorten the length of the chain. However, the panel was not supported sufficiently and as a result it fell and crushed one of the employee’s legs. For four months the worker was unable to put any weight on right his leg, after suffering a total of six fractures which required surgery to insert a metal rod.
Sentencing, Fines & Compensation
HSE told the court that Messrs F T Walton of Flotterton Farm, Thropton, should have guaranteed that suitable equipment was available for the lifting, in order to ensure that the work could be carried out safely.
Messrs F T Walton was fined £5000 by the HSE after admitting breaching Regulation 8(1) Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 and ordered to pay costs of £1096. The injured employee received compensation of £2000.
Injury at Work – Expert Advice
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Source: Health & Safety Executive