Manufacturing company fined after an apprentice suffers life-changing injury

A manufacturing company has been fined after an apprentice’s hand was caught in machinery.
Manchester Magistrates’ Court heard that on 21 November 2018, a 17-year-old apprentice, who had been working at Amber Industries Limited in Oldham for 18 months, was reaming work pieces using an unguarded pillar drill whilst wearing gloves. The glove on his right hand became entangled in the drill bit resulting in three of his fingers being severed.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found there were no guards in place to prevent access to rotating parts and that the company had failed to provide suitable information, instruction and training to the apprentice, including clear instructions not to wear gloves. They also failed to provide adequate supervision and monitoring.

Amber Industries Limited of Crompton Street, Chadderton, Oldham pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The company was fined £52,500 and ordered to pay costs of £14,442.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Jane Carroll said: “This injury was easily preventable, 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”.

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. 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
  4. More information and guidance on young people at work can be found at: www.hse.gov.uk/youngpeople/index.htm