A scrap firm has recently been fined for breaching health and safety at work regulations. The employee lost parts of 4 fingers in an accident while operating poorly maintained machinery.
An investigation conducted by the HSE found that while operating a crocodile shear, the employee lent over the machine while in motion. Sadly this led to the worker getting his right hand caught in it, leading to amputations to four digits.
Health and safety fines
The metal company of Chichester pleaded guilty to breaching section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. They were fined £26,680 as well as being ordered to pay costs of £7005 at Leeds Magistrates Court.
HSE inspector Darian Dundas said that the ‘lack of clear roles and responsibilities, together with insufficient training and poorly maintained machinery, played a significant part in this incident’.
This latest fine comes after the HSE launched their 2022 Autumn/Winter campaign to target UK manufacturers. It also serves as a warning to other businesses that poor health and safety can cause long term damage to employee health which can mean big fines and a tarnished brand.
Why is it important to prioritise health and safety at work?
Maintaining machinery and ensuring that they are in good working order should be a top priority for UK manufacturers. However, some people forget that it’s a legal requirement to ensure that the correct control measures and safe working practices are adhered to on premises. And not only to protect employee health! Good health and safety at work protects everyone, including the bottom line of any business.
So how do you make sure that your legal requirements as a business are being met? Well, If there isn’t the need for a full time compliance manager, many companies use a third party who specialise in UK compliance. This can be the difference in achieving compliance and leaving yourselves vulnerable to fines. As well as protecting employee health, good health and safety helps workers to better understand company policies and procedures, and can lead to better engaged employees. And after all, isn’t it better to retain decent staff than constantly need to recruit?
Health and Safety with Safety First Group
We know that not all businesses have the requirement for in-house health and safety officers. Additionally we’ve worked with companies who have Compliance Managers but still need to work with us to ensure they are achieving overall compliance with the HSE. Whatever the circumstances, a good third party compliance company can make the difference to achieving legal compliance and being left out to dry!
Our qualified health and Safety consultants help businesses fulfil their legal obligations as employers by taking them through health and safety audits, implementing policies, doing risk assessments and more. We’ve even been known to combine services whilst on site so that it’s more cost effective for the customer!
Health and Safety Risk Assessments
The aim of health and safety risk assessments is to reduce risk and prevent harm by identifying anything that could cause injury or death in the workplace.
Regular risk assessments are required by law, and will protect businesses from harm to employees as well as eliminating costly fines. Similarly we know that some risks cannot be eliminated completely, and we just have to manage policies and procedures around that. But, by providing a safe framework for businesses to adhere to, together we are able to confidently control risk and protect employees.
Following a thorough health and safety risk assessment of your premises, our qualified technicians will be able to:
- Demonstrate how compliant you are
- Decide on the severity of any risk that exists
- Identify measures that need to be implemented to control any risks
- Advise which members of staff need to be included in controlling risk
- Provide regular risk reports