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Failing to assess the risks to children

Summary

A 13 years old child was injured whilst working on an egg packing line. On the day of the accident the conveyor had only just started up when his fingers became trapped between the guide wheel and chain.

Action

The active partner in the farming business was prosecuted under:

  1. Section 2(1) of the Health & Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and
  2. Regulation 3 (1) and 10 (2) of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 for failing to carry out a suitable and sufficient risk assessment taking particular account of risks to a young person

The partner pleaded guilty to all charges and was fined £5, 500 and ordered to pay £1,292 towards the cost of bringing the prosecution. In summing up the case the magistrates gave defendant credit for his cooperation with the Health & Safety Executive, the early plea and prompt remedial action and said without these factors the fine imposed would have been much higher.

Advice

Children are more vulnerable to injury than adults. Adequate instruction and training, appropriate to the physical and emotional maturity of the person being trained, should be provided for all pieces of equipment used on the farm - this is particularly important for young people

2012-10-08