Health & Safety News

News added on 14.01.2016



Housing trust prosecuted after mower incident

A housing trust has been fined after a worker suffered serious injuries whilst clearing a blockage on a ride-on mower. How could it have been prevented?

A court case heard how a worker was struck by the metal blade of a ride-on mower whilst clearing a blockage. He reached into the chute on the grass box whilst the metal fan was still rotating. It is understood that he had not received any training on how to use the mower. As a consequence, he did not realise that the fan continued to operate for 30 seconds after the engine was switched off. The worker suffered several broken bones in his hand which led to the amputation of his thumb and forefinger. The HSE prosecuted the trust for its failure to consider the risks from the work, provide adequate training and clear instructions on how to remove blockages from chutes. The trust was fined £140,000 with an additional £70,000 in costs.

If the worker had been given appropriate training on the operation of the mower and instructions on how to clear blockages, he'd have known that the blade continued to rotate after cutting the power. The result was that he suffered permanent damage which could have been easily avoided through adequate management arrangements. Never overlook the basics of staff training.

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