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Timber company fined after worker injured

A timber company based in Nottinghamshire has been ordered to pay a fine after an employee was injured in an incident involving a forklift truck.

What happened?

An employee of Jon Walker Timber Products Ltd was walking alongside the forklift to secure a pallet of fencing when the accident occurred.

The employee, James Abrahams, was hit by the vehicle, leaving him with serious injuries including leg fractures, broken and dislocated toes and deep grazing.

The severity of the injuries meant that he was unable to work for several months after the incident. Furthermore, the worker resigned from his job last year due to anxiety and nervousness caused by the whole episode.

An investigation found that there was an absence of suitable risk assessment as well as a lack of training.

What was the outcome?

Jon Walker Timber Products Ltd pleaded guilty to breaches of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company director received a £10,000 fine after he failed to safeguard the health, safety and welfare of employees when transporting pallets of chestnut pales through the yard.

He was ordered to pay a further £5,000 for an insufficient assessment of the health and safety risks which employees were exposed to in relation to the pallets.

HSE inspector Samantha Farrar stated:

“It had become the usual procedure, when pallets were leaning
or unstable, for employees to walk alongside forklift
trucks to hold the loads steady. It was this
unsafe practice that led to
serious injury.

“Vehicles at work are a major cause of fatal and severe
injuries with more than 5,000 incidents involving
workplace transport every year.

“Providing a safe system of work based upon the findings
of a suitable risk assessment and adequately training,
informing and instructing of staff makes incidents
such as this significantly less likely.”

Source: View article

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