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Company fined after worker suffers serious leg injuries

A Derbyshire foundry firm has today been sentenced after an employee suffered serious leg injuries after being struck by a reversing fork lift truck.

Derby Magistrates heard how on 19 February 2016, an employee of William Lee Ltd was operating a pedestrian operated fork lift truck when he was struck by a reversing counterbalance forklift truck, trapping his leg between the two vehicles. The injured person received serious injuries, including compound fractures to his right tibia and fibula.

An investigation carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the incident found that the company had failed to adequately identify the risks with this activity and effectively segregate pedestrians and vehicles. Supervision, information, instruction and training were inadequate and site rules were flouted by employees, supervisors and managers. The company allowed breaches to continue over a long period of time and did not make appropriate changes following other workplace transport incidents.

William Lee Ltd of Callywhite Lane, Dronfield, Derbyshire pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, has been fined £100,000 and ordered to pay costs of £18,093.47.
 
Speaking after the case, HSE inspector Dr Samantha Farrar said: “The employee’s injuries were life changing and he could have easily been killed. This serious incident could have been avoided if basic safeguards had been put in place, including segregating vehicles and pedestrians, and having clear site rules which are enforced.”

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to reduce work-related death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice, promoting training; new or revised regulations and codes of practice, and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at press.hse.gov.uk
Updated: 2018-11-08