Health and Safety prosecutions in Great Britain in June 2011.

In June 2011, thirty-five companies or individuals were found guilty and fined as a result of being prosecuted by HSE. Four of these prosecutions, which involved six companies, were related to maintenance work.

A worker cleaning a large baling machine was crushed to death when it re-activated. He had received no proper training in how to clean the machine but had tackled the task when asked to do the job. The machine had not been shut down completely as there was a common misunderstanding at the company that isolation and lock-off at the mains were not required.

A maintenance worker fell 12 metres to his death through an unprotected opening in a platform walkway. He had been working with eight others to carry out urgent modification work on equipment. The opening had been left unprotected after a floor grating had been removed. There was also confusion and misunderstanding within the companies involved as to who was responsible for controlling the work.

A young trainee electrician suffered a fractured pelvis, facial injuries, a broken front tooth and lacerations to his elbow when the metal cage from which he was working fell 20ft from the fork lift truck that had been supporting it. The forklift had toppled over onto its side. The electrician and another trainee had been instructed to change a number of light bulbs on a warehouse ceiling. Neither had received any training, the job had not been properly assessed for risk, the wrong equipment had been used and the system of work was poor.

An employee fractured his hip and left elbow after he fell 3 metres whilst trying to step onto a ladder from the top of a lorry cab. He had climbed onto the lorry roof to assess whether or not a wind deflector needed to be fitted. However, he had not been given any training, the ladder had not been secured, no one else was there to help him and there was no safe system of work to complete the job safely.

Notices in June 2011

In June 2011, five Notices were issued in relation to work at height during cleaning or maintenance work:

  • 1 Prohibition Notice was served for the cleaning of a sloping roof without the means in place to protect workers from a fall.
  • 4 Improvement Notices were served for a safer means of working at height when carrying out cleaning and maintenance work.
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dbda is a corporate social responsibility consultancy embracing education and safety in the community. We are privileged to work with a large number of blue chip corporate clients, Government organisations, charitable bodies, Institutes and local authorities. We also have a network of schools, professional bodies, associations, universities and partners, with whom we regularly work in collaboration.

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