The dangerous world of injuries in the workplace

Industry news roundup: week ended 17 Sept 2012:

No one ever said that working a regular job was the safest thing to do everyday, but most of the time you should be relatively safe from harm – but accidents still happen, and when they do, they tend to be quite serious!

Recent stories in the news this past week covering accidents were absolutely lousy with news of several instances of personal injury at work. In fact, two of the most high-profile stories were of those particularly gruesome variety – the kind of manufacturing accidents that nearly inevitably lead to work accident claims made by the injured employee and visits from the Health and Safety Executive made to the employer.

In fact, the injuries sustained by Steven Spencer, a thirty six year old agency worker that had been working an East Yorkshire laminating firm, raised eyebrows this week. Mr Spencer ended up getting his hand caught in a laminating machine at Excel Laminating Ltd’s manufacturing plant.

Mr Spencer was feeding paper through the rollers when his hand was dragged into the laminating machine, suffering massive damage to it that required  four day stay in hospital and two surgical procedures to repair the damage to the three fingers which were nearly severed in the incident. Worse yet is that the poor bloke had only been in his third week of work for Excel Laminating!

The HSE was all over the incident, sending inspectors out to the plant and discovering that there were inadequate safety guards on the laminating machine. This led to a £2,000 fine for Excel Laminating after the HSE dragged the company into Hull Magistrates’ Court, though Excel did have the good sense to at least admitting to breaching Health and Safety regulations.

£2,000 is a pretty weighty fine, but it’s nothing compared to the £14,000 in fines another company had to pay after a rather gruesome incident involving one of their employees suffering massive crush injuries from a lorry’s tail lift. The injuries occurred at Don-Bur Bodies & Trailers Ltd’s Stoke-on-Trent manufacturing plant, where a technician was attempting to fit a tuck-way tail lift to a lorry that had been incorrectly wired, resulting in the lift’s accidental activation, crushing Mark Dimmock, the twenty eight year old employee, who had been under the lorry at the time.

Even worse than Mr Spencer, this poor unfortunate soul had only been with his new employer for barely a week at the time of the accident. His injuries were absolutely massive – as can be imagined – and the HSE went after Don-Bur in a big way.

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