Work accident news
£12k fine for industrial gluing machine accident
An Essex packaging firm has been prosecuted after an industrial accident which saw a worker's hand badly damaged by a gluing machine, the Halstead Gazette reports.
In March 2011 the 57-year-old was using a cleaning paper to remove excess glue from the machine when it became caught, pulling her right hand into the moving rollers.
The tips of two of her fingers were severed in the accident, forcing her to take two months off work.
A work accident investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found it was common practice to clean the gluing machine while the rollers were spinning, in spite of a company policy forbidding this.
Basildon Magistrates' Court heard that staff were not provided with adequate training to clean the machine safely, and that safety guards designed to prevent access to its working parts had not been properly maintained.
An HSE spokesperson said the accident at work could have been prevented if these safety failings had been addressed.
"It is simply unacceptable that this woman should be injured at work as a consequence of her employer's negligence," she said.
Bosses at the packaging company pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act by failing to ensure the safety of their employees.
The industrial accident cost them a fine of £12,000, plus additional court costs of £4,971.