Shovel loader death at UPM paper mill leads to fines of £700,000
Thursday 21st February 2019
From the archive: Just so you know, this article is more than 3 years old.
Mold Magistrates' Court was told that Austin Thomas, 29, was working for logistics firm C M Downton (Haulage Contractors), which provides warehouse services to UPM-Kymmene's Shotton mill, when he was struck by a Volvo shovel loader on 6 February 2017.
The driver of the vehicle was another contract worker who was transporting waste paper from the floor to the recycling line in the warehouse,
Materials Recycling World reported. Thomas was declared dead at the scene.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found there was no system of work to segregate pedestrians and vehicles.
C M Downton pleaded guilty to breaching ss 2(1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act. It was fined £350,000 and ordered to pay costs of £6,614.
UPM-Kymmene was also fined £350,000 and ordered to pay £6,712 costs after it admitted breaching s 3(1) of the same act.
According to BBC News, District Judge Gwyn Jones said it was unclear why the driver did not see Thomas before he ran him over. Closed-circuit television footage showed there was enough room to manoeuvre around him, and that he was visible for a 30-second period.
HSE inspector Mhairi Duffy said: "This death would have been prevented had an effective system of managing workplace transport been in place."
Canterbury Crown Court was told that John Head, 60, was struck by the reversing vehicle at the company's household waste recycling depot in Ross Way, Folkestone, on 18 October 2013. He sustained fatal injuries and died at the scene. The waste and recycling firm was found guilty of breaching s 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act and must pay £130,000 costs. A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation revealed refuse collection vehicle and articulated lorry drivers often manoeuvred around the yard without specific controls in place.
A division of infrastructure giant Balfour Beatty has been fined £600,000 after it failed to implement a safe system of work for refuelling machinery on the third Don crossing site in Aberdeen, Scotland.
A manufacturer of chemicals for use in the crop protection, pharmaceutical and speciality chemicals markets has been fined £224,000 after workers were exposed to chemicals harmful to health and sustained long-term skin damage.