Farming company fined after woman’s life-changing head injuries
A farming firm has landed in court after the fiancée of one of the company directors suffered serious head injuries after she lost control of an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) while not wearing a helmet.
The woman, who doesn’t wish to be named, remained in hospital for ten days and was unable to return to work for seven months after the ATV that she was driving crashed and rolled, throwing her onto the road.
Devon farms failed to report the incident to the Health and Safety Executive, which only became aware of what happened after Devon and Cornwall Police made contact with them.
After an investigation, it became clear that the ATV was poorly maintained, with longstanding defects to the brakes and steering. It was described by a police vehicle examiner as being in ‘a dangerous and un-roadworthy condition’.
Additionally, the director’s fiancée had received no formal training in the use of an ATV and had no helmet was made available for her to wear.
What was the outcome?
The firm was fined £2,000 and ordered to pay costs of £483 after pleading guilty to breaches of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998, the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995 and the Health and Safety at Work etc Act.
The prosecuting HSE Inspector, Simon Jones, said:
“This was an entirely preventable injury and it is by
fortune that it was not a fatality.
“ATV’s are incredibly useful to the farming industry but it is essential
that they are properly maintained with regular
checks to ensure they are safe.
“Farmers should not wait for something to go wrong before maintaining
an ATV. Anyone who uses an ATV should be properly trained and
always wear a helmet. If you have an accident on an ATV
wearing a helmet could save your life or
prevent a serious head injury.”
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 [email protected]
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