Poor safety leads to fines for packaging firms
Two packaging companies have recently been found guilty of a number of breaches of the health and safety regulations, resulting fines being issued.
W E Roberts and Diamond Box were both investigated by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), which issued a number of notices. W E Roberts had been informed of a number of concerns regarding health and safety by an external consulting company. However, the firm did not act on the information provided, and the HSE visited the company eight months later, tipped off by an ex-worker.
The areas that required work included machinery guarding, electrical safety and materials storage. HSE served 14 notices to the firm. Maidstone Crown Court fined the company £297,000 and ordered it to pay costs of £14,180.
Diamond Box was also investigated by HSE, following an incident where a maintenance worker was dragged into machinery while it was still moving. Wolverhampton Crown Court was informed that maintenance work was allowed to take place without any form of risk assessment.
Despite the machinery having a “jog mode”, which would enable the machinery to be used safely, the company failed to make workers aware. Risk assessments had not been carried out, the employees had not been trained and the firm did not enforce the use of the machinery's safety feature. The company was fined £400,000.
Caroline Lane, inspector with HSE, stated that rather than put safe work procedures in place, the company had relied on the maintenance workers. PPE and specialist workwear should be used where necessary.