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Worker killed by falling power press

Date:
13 November 2015

A Wrexham firm was fined after a worker was killed when a machine weighing an estimated half a tonne fell on him.

Chester Crown Court heard Christopher Williams, a maintenance supervisor at Morgan Technical Ceramics Limited, was moving a power press that was stored in a shipping container in the yard behind the factory.

He was moving the press on a pallet truck when it toppled over, striking the 51-year-old, causing fatal injuries to his chest.

HSE’s investigation into the incident, which occurred in December 2012, found that the lifting operation had been unsafe and Mr Williams had not been adequately trained in undertaking the lifting of non-standard loads.

Morgan Technical Ceramics Limited, of Vauxhall Industrial Estate, Ruabon, was fined a total of £180,000, and ordered to pay £23,300 in costs after pleading guilty to offences under Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

Speaking after the hearing Health and Safety Executive inspector Katherine Walker said: “Thirty per cent of fatal accidents in manufacturing in Great Britain involve the fall of a heavy item. It is important that everyone involved in maintenance understands the risks and lifts are properly planned by a competent person.”

For more information about safe maintenance: http://www.hse.gov.uk/safemaintenance/

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 http://press.hse.gov.uk

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