A North West food firm has been fined after a worker died when plastic bales fell on top of him.
On 4 February 2015, 29 year old father of one Jacek Adamowicz was cleaning a storage yard when a number of plastic bales weighing 703kg fell towards him trapping him against the ground.
Manchester Crown Court heard today that Hitchen Foods, owned by the Bakkavor Group, had failed to consider and properly plan the stacking and storage of the bales.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found there was unsafe stacking of bales of plastic. Bakkavor Foods Limited had failed to implement properly planned safe systems of work for their employees who were exposed during the stacking of the bales. There was also no formal training in stacking bales and lack of monitoring in the bale area.
Bakkavor Foods Limited of Dobson Park Way, Wigan plead guilty to breaches of Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work at 1974 and was fined £2million with £32,595.10 costs.
Speaking after the hearing HSE inspector Ian Betley said: “Bakkavor Foods Limited fell far short of the required standard expected. Not only should proper planning have been carried out in relation to the storage and stacking of waste bales, but also a system of work subsequently put in place to mitigate those risks. The company failed on both of these counts with devastating consequences.”
Notes to Editors:
- 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
- More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
- HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk