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Firm fined after worker paralysed

Firm fined after worker paralysed

A North Wales paper mill company has been fined £120,000 and ordered to pay costs of £18,514 after an employee was paralysed from the chest down after being crushed by a two-tonne reel of paper.

Christopher John Shaw, 38, from the Wirral, was working as an assistant winder for SCA Hygiene Products UK Ltd when the incident occurred on July 29 2007.

Mr Shaw, who was producing and preparing paper reels at the firm's site in Oakenholt, Flint, was using his body weight to slow down a moving paper reel when he slipped. The reel, which was around two metres in diameter, then rolled onto him and caused paralysis.

After being prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the company pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 at Mold Crown Court.

HSE inspector Will Gretton said: "Employees using their body weight to slow down such large and potentially dangerous items as paper reels, clearly isn't a safe way of working.

"There were clear risks that weren't properly managed by the company, which resulted in Mr Shaw's horrific injuries."

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