Aircraft co fined for MEWP falls which 'could have been a double fatality'
Monday 20th March 2017
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The accident involved an employee of Inflite Engineering Services and an agency worker, who were carrying out checks to the tail of an aeroplane, Chelmsford Magistrates' Court was told.
The two men were standing on MEWPs either side of the plane's tail when another worker closed the wrong circuit breaker, inadvertently opening the air brakes (used to increase drag or the angle of approach during landing) and knocking over both platforms.
One man sustained a punctured lung, a broken back and ribs, and fractures to his pelvis and elbow. The second broke his wrist and chipped a bone in his back.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the company had not carried out a suitable risk assessment and there was a lack of effective monitoring.
Inflite Engineering pleaded guilty to breaching ss 2(1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act on 15 March. It was fined and ordered to pay costs of almost £5,500.
HSE inspector Tania van Rixtel said after the hearing: "Both of these men suffered shocking injuries after falling from height, which could easily have been a double fatality. Our investigation found the incident could have been avoided had adequate monitoring been taking place."
In March 2015, the 66-year-old contractor was installing fire detection equipment at Whirlpool’s factory at Yate, near Bristol (formerly owned by Indesit), where it manufactures tumble dryers. He was working at a height of 5 m when Whirlpool maintenance staff, unaware of his presence, started an overhead conveyor. The movement destabilised the MEWP, toppling it and dropping the contractor to the factory floor, fatally injuring him.The Health and Safety Executive found there was no supervision or controls to prevent the conflicting tasks being carried out.
The company had failed to recognise its roles as client and the principal contractor under the Construction (Design and Management) (CDM) Regulations 2015.Two of the four men suffered leg fractures; a third sustained a broken collar bone, while the fourth sustained severe bruising of the chest, which required him to wear a body vest. Had LSDM properly managed the working at height and lifting risks, and also provided the right level of trained personnel and supervision to carry out the work safely, the incident would not have happened.
Forty-nine-year-old employee Parvez Ahmed was left fighting for his life when an unstable stack of cardboard bales, weighing around 400kg, tumbled over and landed on him as he was carrying out work at the firm’s recycling site on 22 April 2016. Ahmed suffered a cracked skull and a brain haemorrhage.Arrow Recycling of Premier Works, Cornwall Road, Smethwick, West Midlands pleaded guilty to breaching reg 10(4) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was sentenced at Wolverhampton Magistrates’ last week. The company was also ordered to pay £2,917 in costs.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that Coldmac had failed to ensure that the guarding on the machine was safe.Nuneaton Magistrates’ Court heard this week how the North Lincolnshire construction firm had appointed specialist contractors for a new footway. On 8 April 2015, the worker was using a screwdriver to scrape asphalt residue off a mixer that he had been using. When the screwdriver suddenly slipped, his hand caught the lip of the mixer and lost his middle and index fingers.
Work was underway to decommission the lift shaft in a building that was being converted into luxury apartments, Southwark Crown Court was told. In January 2011 the victims were working on top of the lift car when the chain that was supporting it broke. It plummeted six storeys to the bottom. One of the labourers, who was wearing a harness attached to the top of the lift car, fell in the space between the car and the shaft and survived with serious injuries. The other worker was not wearing a harness and died instantly.
Pilot Andy Hill flew a Hawker Hunter (G-BXFI) ex-military jet too low and too slowly during a loop-the-loop stunt on 22 August 2015. The aircraft failed to level out after the manoeuvre and crashed into the A27 road’s westbound carriageway. Eleven people were fatally injured and a further 13 people were hurt, including Hill. The aircraft was destroyed. Risk management