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Respiratory protection equipment required when working around ozone

The requirement for companies to provide their employees with respiratory protection equipment while working in areas exposed to ozone gas has been highlighted in a recent court case.

Soft drinks manufacturer Cott Beverages, of Citrus Grove, Sideley, Kegworth, Derby, was fined £20,000 and ordered to pay costs of £11,565 following an incident where a contractor suffered a life-changing condition after becoming overcome by the fumes.

Loughborough Magistrates' Court heard on Monday (November 12th) how Richard Sharp, from Wetherby, West Yorkshire, suffered acute irritant asthma after being exposed to dangerous levels of ozone gas while servicing a UV light system in a plant room.

Mr Sharp was not informed that ozone was present in the area and has since been unable to return to work. The 49-year-old also struggles with day-to-day activities as anything from perfume to exhaust fumes can trigger an asthma attack.

Health and Safety Executive inspector Richenda Dixon commented: "As a result of the company's failings Richard's quality of life has been severely affected and it is unlikely he will be able to return to his normal job.

"The company should have foreseen the risks and devised a safe way of working."

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