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Company fined after worker dies following crush injury

Date:
4 July 2018

A textile company was sentenced today for safety breaches after a worker died from crush injuries.

Leeds Magistrates Court heard how, on 28 February 2014, a 50-year-old employee of W E Rawson Limited leant into a packaging machine whilst attempting to free a stuck package. Whilst doing so, he became trapped between an upper and lower moving conveyor. The employee suffered severe crush injuries and later died in hospital.

An investigation carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the incident found the company had failed to take measures to prevent access to the danger zone between the moving conveyors. The investigation also found that no safe system of work had been provided for the removal of trapped packages from the machine.

W E Rawson Limited of Castlebank Mills Portobello Road Wakefield pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined £600,000 and ordered to pay costs of £20,165.09.

After the hearing, HSE inspector John Boyle commented: “This fatality could have been prevented had the risk been identified.

“Employers should make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk from dangerous parts of machinery.”

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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