FedEx fined over half a million pounds for safety breach
Following an accident, where a worker suffered serious injuries, FedEx UK has been fined more than half a million pounds by Cannock Magistrates Court.
In November 2017, a worker at the FedEx Midlands depot in Burntwood Business Park was hit by a reversing forklift and suffered a serious arm injury and soft tissue damage to his legs. A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that there was not enough space in the workplace between where forklift trucks operated and pedestrians walked. The HSE said that “robust segregation” is required in workplaces where forklift trucks and pedestrian workers operate.
FedEx pleaded guilty and was fined £533,000 and over £10,000 in costs. Wendy Campbell, the HSE inspector, said after the court hearing:
“Those in control of work have a responsibility to provide safe methods of working and a safe working environment.”
She added that vehicle collisions with pedestrians can be prevented if the workplace is laid out properly with strict segregation between vesicles and pedestrians. She said that, if there had been physical barriers and suitable work practices, the accident at FedEx could have been avoided.
Protective workwear such as hard hats and steel-toed boots can protect workers from items falling from forklift trucks, but are ineffective if a vehicle hits a walking worker. Neglecting suitable health and safety measures can, as this case shows, cost companies a great deal of money as well as making employees unable to continue working.