Carter International was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after the 21-year-old was crushed when a machine part fell from a forklift truck onto his legs. The two-metre-long machine knocked the worker to the ground, breaking his collar bone and causing multiple fractures to his legs. He had to wear a cast for several months after the incident and was not able to return to work for ten months.
The HSE investigation found that the bolts used to hold the machine part on the forklift truck were not designed for the job and that lifting machinery at the site had not been properly checked by Carter International, despite the company receiving previous warnings from HSE in 2005, which required it to have its lifting equipment properly inspected.
The company also failed to have proper lifting processes in place, with individual employees often having to decide how to carry out particular jobs.
HSE inspector David Norton said:
“It is vital that companies where workers routinely lift very heavy objects not only provide the right equipment, but also have proper processes in place and plan each job properly to prevent these types of incidents.”
Carter International Ltd admitted breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 by failing to ensure the safety of their staff during lifting operations. The company was fined Ã‚Â£10,000 and ordered to pay Ã‚Â£4,184 costs.