A West Yorkshire company has been sentenced after a worker died when he was crushed beneath a one tonne silo of varnish that slid from the tines of a forklift truck and toppled onto him.
Wayne Potts, 39, of Dalefield Avenue, Normanton, died from his injuries hours after the incident on 25 March 2011 at Gardiner Colours Ltd factory in Ripley Drive nearby.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted the company, which makes inks, varnishes and coatings, after an investigation highlighted several safety failings, crucially the failure by Gardiner’s to spot risks to its workforce.
There was evidence that this was not the only incident at Gardiner Colours that had involved a load falling from the tines of a forklift truck; this near-miss ought to have alerted the company to the risk of a silo falling. The company, of Ripley Drive, Normanton, near Wakefield, was fined £66,000 and ordered to pay £50,000 in costs after admitting breaching the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.
“Every worker should quite rightly expect that they will return home safely from work every day. Sadly this did not happen for Wayne Potts that day but there is no doubt that his death was avoidable had Gardiner Colours effectively managed the health, safety and welfare of its employees and learned lessons from previous incidents and near-misses.” Full story… http://press.hse.gov.uk/2015/manufacturing-firm-fined-over-workers-death/
There is a real concern that manufacturing industries do not assess the risks within their business. In my experience when training at such sites, the term, [quote]we’ve always done it like that and nothing’s happened yet.[/quote] Yet! That’s a concern, or it should be. That means that they will only act when there is a serious injury that has to be reported to the HSE and they have to act.
Training staff in safe systems of work gives them knowledge of the benefits of health and safety at work. If Gardiner Colours had had a culture of training staff to reduce risks, work safely and monitor accidents and near-miss incidents, I have no doubt that Wayne Potts would still be alive today.
Act now! If you are serious about keeping your staff safe, and the law dictates that you should be, there are two things that you should do as an employer.
1) Come along to one of my Health and Safety for CEOs workshops and learn about your legal and moral responsibilities.
2) Get you staff onto one of my health and safety training courses before it’s too late.
If you think you can’t afford the training, you can’t afford the fines, shame, financial loss, guilt and bad publicity.
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