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Causes of fatal injury

In the twelve year period April 2000 to March 2012 there were 53 fatal injuries in the food and drink manufacturing industries.

These fatalities involved machinery/plant (38%), workplace transport (25%), falls from height (15%), confined spaces/asphyxiation (11%), struck by an object (8%), animals (2%) and electrocution (2%).

Fatal injuries since April 2000 include:

Industry Agent involved Summary
Coffee Transport (fork lift truck) Driver crushed when FLT overturned, possibly during sharp turn
Biscuits Transport Reach truck struck door lintel which dislodged and fell on driver
Brewing Transport FLT driver trapped when FLT overturned while unloading beer kegs from HGV
Sea food High fall Worker fell 2.3m from racking in freezer store and suffered head injuries
Cocoa/chocolate High fall Lift stuck between two floors. Worker climbed out, lost footing, and fell to basement
Slaughtering Machinery/plant Electrician crushed by animal handling machinery he was trying to repair
Bakery Transport Driver crushed when shunter unit reversed onto HGV trailer docked in loading bay
Soup Machinery/plant Worker scalded when pressurized cooking vessel was opened due to fault
Fish products High fall Worker fell from FLT forks while attaching bulk bag onto forks
Bakery Machinery/plant Fitter struck by dough mixing machine which fell from raised forks of FLT
Animal feed Machinery/plant Worker reached through feed opening on top of large mixer when pneumatic sliding hatch over opening closed unexpectedly
Meat processing Transport Worker run over by fork lift truck carrying plastic crates
Bakery Low fall Worker fixing machine when he fell from a low platform and struck his head on floor
Meat Transport FLT entered chiller unit, driver found on floor behind truck with head injuries
Meat Transport HGV driver trapped between tractor and trailer when it moved as the trailer legs were raised
Sugar Transport Worker struck by loading shovel while crossing large warehouse
Sugar Machinery/plant Worker suffered burns when boiler at sugar processing plant exploded
Cheese Confined space TIG welding contractor overcome after entering vessel containing small volume of argon at base
Bakery Transport Pallet of flour fell from lorry during unloading trapping worker
Sugar High fall Contractor fell 8.5m from scissor lift fitted with a fenced platform
Pet food Machinery/plant Worker trapped while unblocking palletising/depalletising machine
Sugar Machinery/plant Excavator with driver fell into water while being transferred from jetty to hold of ship
Animal by-products Confined space Electrical fitter overcome by fumes when he entered plant to assist a co-worker checking a blockage
Malt products High fall Worker fell from fenced access platform at a silo/bucket elevator
Milk/creamery Transport HGV driver crushed between his vehicle and another as he ran to stop his unbraked vehicle running away
Bakery Transport Agency lorry driver's head became trapped in tail lift mechanism while driver unloading empty bread baskets
Animal feed High fall Employee fell 5m to the ground through an unfenced opening in a mezzanine floor
Animal feed Machinery/plant Two maintenance workers cleaning the inside of a large feed mixer died when it started running
Brewery Asphyxiation Maintenance fitter was overcome by carbon dioxide when working on a carbon dioxide pump
Pet foods Machinery/plant Maintenance worker became trapped in a packaging machine which stacked trays of pet food
Slaughtering Animals Heffer escaped from rear of delivery lorry and struck worker who died of head injuries
Snack foods Asphyxiation Delivery driver died of chlorine inhalation while unloading chemicals
Rice Machinery/Plant Worker entered silo and trapped leg in screw auger, died later in hospital
Animal feedstuffs High falls Lorry driver fell from road tanker being loaded with animal feedstuffs
Animal feedstuffs Asphyxiation Lorry driver was buried by animal feed pellets at rear of bulker lorry during tipping/unloading.
Meat processing   Machinery/plant   Cleaning supervisor died while carrying out a cleaning operation on a large meat blender
Sugar confectionery Machinery/plant  Worker became trapped when clearing blockage in sweet making machine
Meat processing  Machinery/plant Worker crushed when meat conveyor he was assisting to dismantle fell on him
Wine production Struck by object Vineyard worker unloading bottles from lorry when load fell on him
Pet foods Transport Lift truck driver trapped head between cab and fixed plant
Confectionery Machinery/plant Production worker received severe head injuries when his head was trapped in a 'robot' depalletising machine.
Bakery Machinery/plant Production manager died following an explosion during the lighting of a gas oven
Animal feed Machinery/plant Worker reached through feed opening on top of large mixer when pneumatic sliding hatch over opening closed unexpectedly
Meat processing Transport Worker run over by fork lift truck carrying plastic crates
Pet foods Machinery/plant Telehandler operator was trapped by moving mast while leaning out of cab side window
Soft drinks Struck by object Maintenance engineer struck on back of head by gantry as he dismantled it
Meat processing (abattoir) Struck by object Worker dismantling sliding partition wall mechanism in old refrigeration trailer when mechanism trapped him
Animal feed mill Asphyxiation Driver was standing at rear of bulk grain tipping trailer and was engulfed by grain when the trailer body was raised to discharge its load
Salads Electrocuted Contractor working in roof space electrocuted by live wire  
Meat processing (abattoir) Machinery/plant Worker trapped in hide-pulling machine while cleaning it
Animal by-products Machinery/plant Cow carcass came off overhead rail and hit worker
Meat processing (abattoir) Machinery/plant Maintenance worker scalded by steam while repairing industrial cooker
Animal feeds Transport Worker struck by loading shovel whilst collecting samples
Dairy Transport Worker trying to couple HGV tractor unit to trailer at milk processing/ bottling site

Note: the above table includes some fatalities to contractors

Updated 2012-11-29