An international food company supplying major United Kingdom supermarkets was fined after a worker was hurt while cleaning processing machinery.
The incident happened on April 20 during the night shift at the Bakkavör Fresh Cook Ltd site in Sluice Road, Holbeach St Marks, Lincolnshire. Spalding Magistrates' Court heard that the worker was cleaning a machine consisting of three tanks tipping food into each other.
In order to clean the machine properly, hygiene operatives needed to stand on the frame of the machine to reach various parts. As the injured worker reached up she lost her footing and fell into one of the 1.5 meter deep tanks, resulting in her losing consciousness. She was rescued by colleagues who heard her shout as she fell.
The injured woman was subsequently off work for five weeks and reported suffering from severe headaches and pains in her neck and back, for which she had to take pain killers.
Bakkavör Fresh Cook Ltd, of West Marsh Road, Spalding, Lincolnshire, was fined £3,500 ($5,340) and ordered to pay costs of £2,091 ($3,190) after pleading guilty to breaching section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.
HSE Inspector Jo Anderson noted, “No-one at Bakkavör realized that climbing was involved to clean this machine. A risk assessment should have been carried out and an examination of how work at height was being undertaken. (workersxzcompxzkit)
"This case highlights the need for employers to be aware of what goes on during the night shift. All staff has a right to the same standard of care irrespective of their working hours."
Author Rebecca Shafer, J.D., Amaxx Risks Solutions, Inc. has worked successfully for 20 years with many industries to reduce Workers’ Compensation costs, including airlines, healthcare, manufacturing, printing/publishing, pharmaceuticals, retail, hospitality and manufacturing. She can be contacted at: RShafer@ReduceYourWorkersComp.com or 860-553-6604.
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