A farming partnership company has been sentenced for Health & Safety breaches after a worker fell roughly three metres from a vehicle.
The court heard that an employee was working on the gable end of a barn on the farm. The individual was working from a non-integrated work platform. This platform was attached to the boom of an excavator vehicle. The platform then fell from the boom of the excavator. The worker fell roughly three metres. He sustained a fractured sternum, six broken ribs, a fractured bone in his back and three broken teeth.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive found that the platform was used with the excavator because the partnership thought it had better reach and manoeuvrability to undertake the job of fixing the gable ends to the shed.
The farming company pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974. The company was then fined £18,000 and ordered to pay £787.87 in costs.
After the hearing, HSE Inspector Chris Tilley spoke: ‘Excavators should not be used under any circumstances for lifting people as they are primarily designed for excavating with a bucket and consequently are capable of operating speeds and movements which make them totally unsuitable for lifting people.’