A cable manufacturing company has been sentenced for safety breaches after a worker suffered the loss of his left little finger.
The accident happened during the cable making process when the injured worker put his left hand into an unguarded machine. His hand came into contact with dangerous parts of the machinery. He lost one finger and received serious lacerations to the other fingers on his left hand as a result.
A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found there was no guarding in place to prevent access to the dangerous part of the machinery.
The employer was found to be in breach of Regulation 11(1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 which provides that every employer shall ensure that effective measures are taken to prevent access to any dangerous part of machinery, or to stop the movement of any dangerous part of machinery or rotating stock-bar before any part of a person enters a danger zone.
Such measures would usually consist of the provision of fixed guards enclosing the dangerous part or rotating stock-bar or other protection devices. The employer also has a duty to provide information, instruction, training and adequate supervision to their employees.
In this case it is apparent that there was no adequate risk assessment in place to guard against the risk of injury.
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After the hearing, HSE inspector Victoria Crofton commented: “This injury was easily prevented and the risk should have been identified. “Employers should make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk from dangerous parts of machinery.”