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In short: Improper guarding led to amputation

A plastic sheeting manufacturer has been fined £20,000 after a maintenance worker’s hand was seriously injured when it became caught in a pinch roller on a production line.

An employee of ITW was repairing a broken piece of plastic sheeting by rethreading it into the pinch roller. His gloved hand dragged into the rollers and was crushed. The index finger on his right hand had to be surgically removed because it was so badly damaged. 

The Health and Safety Executive’s investigation into the accident, which happened on 30 May 2012, found ITW had not properly guarded machinery along the length of the production line, despite having identified the risks. 

The company was sentenced at Swansea Magistrates’ Court, where it pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 11(1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations. It was fined and ordered to pay £6,018 in costs. 

 

Keeley Downey is acting deputy editor of IOSH Magazine. She is a former editor of Biofuels International, Bioenergy Insight and Tank Cleaning Magazine

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