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Unsupervised joiner’s finger severed by saw

A joinery company based in Rugby, Warwickshire, has been fined after an employee sustained serious hand injuries while using a circular saw.

Avon Joinery admitted breaching reg 9(1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations on 26 July after an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found it had not given the worker necessary refresher training. 

Coventry Magistrates’ Court was told that the 59-year-old joiner was using the saw to cut tapered strips of wood on 3 February 2016 when his hand came into contact with the blade. He lost most of his left index finger and the tip of his thumb.    

The company, which supplies timber products to house builders nationwide, was fined £230,000 and ordered to pay costs of almost £1,780. 

After the hearing HSE inspector Neil Ward said: “This incident could have been prevented if the company had the required standard of supervision in place to oversee this activity.”

 

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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