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Company admits neglecting safety of employees

Company admits neglecting safety of employees

On 19 April 2013, Staples Disposables Limited was successfully prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) at Lincoln Crown Court and ordered to pay more than £116,000 in fines and costs after three workers sustained hand injuries whilst using unguarded machinery.

The first employee suffered an amputation of his left thumb after it became caught in unguarded machinery on a production line and crushed. Approximately one month later, a second employee cut her finger on the blade of a napkin folding machine and was unable to return to work at the company as a result. A further 12 months later, a third employee lost all four fingers of his right hand after it was caught between unguarded rollers. It is currently unknown whether he will be able to return to work.

The investigation by the HSE revealed a string of failures on the part of Staples Disposables Limited and following the court hearing, the HSE inspector stated that “the company was well aware that machines should have interlocked guards in place to prevent people accessing dangerous moving parts of the machinery, yet it continued to put workers at risk over a prolonged period. Injury was inevitable.” He also criticised the company for its failure to supervise factory operations properly and for its poor health and safety management system.

Malcolm Underhill, Partner in IBB’s Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence team comments:

“The successful prosecution of this company by the HSE underlines the fact that the safety and welfare of employees is paramount and employers who fail in their duties to provide a safe system of work will be held to account. The case also highlights the dangers faced by many people who work closely with machinery on a day to basis and should serve as a warning to employers who neglect the safety of their employees.”

IBB’s experienced Personal Injury Solicitors can provide advice and assistance if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident at work. Contact our specialist personal injury team by calling 01895 207972 oe emailing PI@ibblaw.co.uk.