Overturned forklift truck leads to employee injury. As a result, a company has been fined in the region of £200,000.
In August 2018, a 57 year old employee was injured while helping to unload a delivery. The victim was using a forklift truck in tandem with another driver. They lifted a large load from a flatbed lorry. Part of the load was lifted to allow the lorry to move forward. In doing so, another part of the load struck the mast of his forklift. This caused it to overturn. The worker sustained ligament and muscle damage to his ankle. He was off work for five months as a result.
The Health & Safety Executive conducted an investigation. They found that the lifting work had not been properly planned. It also had not been risk assessed. The employees were not aware of the relevant procedures. There were also safer alternate methods available that had not been considered.
The company in question pleaded guilty. They had breached Section 2 (1) of the Health & Safety at Work Act. £200,000 in fines and £7138.20 in costs was issued.
After the hearing, an inspector for the HSE spoke. ‘The risks associated with unloading vehicles should be recognised and controlled. Complex lifts including handling heavy or unusual loads require careful planning and additional considerations. The incident could have been avoided if appropriate safeguards had been put in place. Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement against those that fall below the required standards.’
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