HSE Updates & Prosecutions

7th December 2021

A recent HSE prosecution has taken place after a food manufacturing company has been fined for safety breaches after a hygiene operative suffered a serious injury when his hand came into contact with a mixer whilst cleaning the door mechanism, resulting in his index finger being severed.

The findings of the HSE investigation were that; They failed to adequately maintain guarding arrangements on the paddle mixer whilst also having deficiencies with training and supervision. Breaching Section 11 (1) Provision and use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998.

The company was fined £93,000 and ordered to pay £769 in costs.

Comment made by HSE Inspector following were that “This incident could so easily have been avoided by simply implementing the correct control measures and safe working practices.”

Worker injured finger in machinery

9th December 2021

The director of an air conditioning company has been sentenced after a worker sustained a broken back when he fell five metres to the ground.

breaching Section 37(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and received a six-month custodial sentence suspended for 12 months. Also required to complete 150 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay costs of £4,886 and a victim surcharge.

HSE Inspector said “Roof work is a high-risk activity and duty holders must ensure they put measures in place to protect against this risk. “Falls from height often result in life-changing or fatal injuries.  In most cases, these incidents are needless and could be prevented by properly planning the work to ensure that effective preventative and protective measures are in place.”

Injury sustained from fall from height

13th December 2021

A sawmill company has been fined for breaching Regulation 11 (1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER) and Section 2 (1) of the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974, after a worker came into contact with the moving parts at the rear of a saw, sustaining injury to his finger.

The company was fined £40,000 and ordered to pay costs of £15,594.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector said: “This injury was easily preventable. Those in control have a responsibility to devise safe methods of working and to provide the necessary information, instruction and training to their workers.”

Worker finger severed in machinery

13th December 2021

A company has been fined for safety breaches after a worker’s hand was entangled and wrapped around the rotating shaft on a lathe.

Breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety Act 1974 and have been fined £530,000 and ordered to pay costs of £4,548.20

The HSE inspector said: “Those in control of work have a responsibility to assess risk and devise safe methods of working in which their employees should then be instructed and trained. Had effective managerial arrangements been in place for the task ensuring employees follow a safe system of work, based upon risk assessment and supervision, information, instruction, and training is provided the life changing injuries sustained by this worker could have been prevented.

“Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards”.

Worker loses hand in lathe

HSE also continues to review & update guidance on control measures for Covid-19 & variants of the virus.

The HSE are carrying out spot check programmes ensuring business are working safely and continuing to reduce the risk posed by COVID-19 transmission in the workplace. Spot-Checks &  Stress and Mental Health

Other guidance to support the management of Covid-19 controls on your sites.

Coronavirus working-safely  

Coronavirus ventilation

Face coverings

Homeworking guidance

Risk Assessment

You can continue to reduce the risk of transmission during the pandemic by taking measures to limit the number of people your workers are in contact with, so each person works with the same, consistent group.

UK government guidance on working safely provides further information and advice on these measures covering a range of different types of work.

You should make sure the measures identified by your risk assessment take account of the public health regulations and guidance for the nation you are working in. Please refer to your relevant guidance:

Inspectors are also carrying out checks as part of their normal role in visiting workplaces to check people are working safely. To ensure we reach as many workplaces as possible nationally and support the core work of our inspectors, we are working with trained and approved partners to deliver the spot check calls and visits.