Firm fined after employee crushed

NILA 24-07-12 BE 3 Ward recycling, Griffon road Ilkeston.
NILA 24-07-12 BE 3 Ward recycling, Griffon road Ilkeston.

Ilkeston firm, Ward Recycling, has been fined almost £40,000 after an employee suffered ‘terrible injuries’ while working at the site.

Thomasz Hac and a colleague were attempting to clear a blockage from a machine which crushes and shreds scrapped cars at the Griffon Road site when the accident happened in June 2009.

They were working inside the machine when a trapped car slid down and landed on Mr Hac.

He suffered severe abdominal crush injuries and broke his shoulder blade and four ribs. He returned to work at the site in September 2009 but has since left the company.

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found the incident could have been easily prevented.

Donald Ward Limited pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

Southern Derbyshire Magistrates’ Court fined the firm £20,000 and ordered it to pay costs of £19,970.

After the hearing HSE inspector, Sarah Jardine, said: “The work Mr Hac and his colleague were carrying out had not been thought through.

“The company should have foreseen the risks and devised a safe way of removing blockages that didn’t involve workers being put in the way of something that was likely to move. As a result of the company’s failings a man has suffered terrible injuries.”

A spokesman for Ward Recycling said: “Ward Recycling consider the welfare of its employees to be of paramount importance and we are obviously very concerned that Mr Hac was involved in an accident whilst working at one of our sites.

“External Health and Safety consultants had been employed to assess all risks on the new fragmentiser but unfortunately this was an unforeseen eventuality.

“We are pleased that Mr Hac made a full recovery from his injuries.”