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Firm admits neglecting safety after three workers injure their hands

Posted in: Employer Negligence Workplace Injuries 

A Lincolnshire firm that makes disposable paper products has been ordered to pay more than £116,000 in fines and costs after three workers suffered hand injuries using unguarded machines.

One man had to have his left thumb amputated after getting it crushed in unguarded machinery on a production line on 26th July 2011. He was off work for several months but has now returned to the company to work on other duties.

A month later an agency worker cut her finger on the blade of a napkin folding machine, while a year later another man lost all four fingers of his right hand after it was caught between unguarded rollers. It is not known whether he will be able to return to work.

The company pleaded guilty to three charges of breaching Sections 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and one of breaching Section 3(1) of the same Act.

According to HSE inspector David Lefever, the company had a poor health and safety management system and failed to suitably supervise factory operations.

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 said.


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