Steel firm fined over worker’s amputated toes
Posted: December 3, 2014
A steel firm has been fined after a worker was crushed by a metal-shaping machine and had to have three toes amputated. The worker, from North Ormesby, had been working with a metal press when it fell onto his foot on 17 March. His employer, SM Thompson Limited, had allowed these highly dangerous practices to go unchecked for the last decade. Following a recent investigation, the firm admitted a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) breach and was fined £7,500. It was also made to pay £1,120 in costs.
The 25-year-old worker suffered “life-changing injuries” in the accident, having had the big toe on his left foot removed and two others. He was forced to remain in hospital for a week after the accident, but has since returned to work.
“Staff at needless risk”
One HSE inspector, Paul Wilson, said that the accident should never have happened. He added: “The failure of SM Thompson to look properly at the risks involved and then organise the lifting operation properly put staff at needless risk. This sadly led to the painful and life-changing injuries suffered by this young man.”
According to HSE statistics, 2013/14 saw 133 workers killed at work, alongside 78,000 injuries reported under RIDDOR and 629,000 injuries recorded by the Labour Force Survey. Around £14.2 billion was paid out as a result of injuries at work.
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