Incorrect Use of Forklift Injures Employee

In December 2016, an employee of Lemon Groundwork Solutions Limited, of Russell Gardens, suffered multiple injuries.

The accident caused the employee, Shaka Hawthorne, multiple fractures in his leg after steel fell from a fork lift truck during transit. 

HSE investigations found that adequate precautions were not put in place, and the incident would have been avoided if health and safety regulations were followed correctly. The HSE also found other safety infractions putting the employees at risk. Vehicle routes and workstations were not segregated, heightening the risk of collision between vehicles and employees. There was no equipment available to avoid bar slipping, an issue prevalent in fork lift operations. Further highlighting the lapses of health and safety, forklift drivers did not have any specific job training and were unaware of correct precautions to take. 

The steel fabricating company pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work ect Act 1974, receiving a fine of £100,000, and further costs of £6,253. The company was ordered to pay £8,900 of their fine each month, with the victim awarded just £170. 

HSE inspector Nikki Hughes said that “This incident could easily have been avoided by the implementation of affordable control measures, such as a lifting accessory being used on the forklift truck. Handling and moving reinforcing bars is a well-recognised industry risk, which the company failed to identify and manage, despite the activity occurring frequently during a working day. Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”


Source: SHP Safety & Health Practitioner, Forklift safety failing: Worker suffered multiple breaks in his leg, 9th September 2018. Read the full article. 

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