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March 9, 2021

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Manufacturing firm fined after employee suffers life-changing injury

Employee had right leg amputated after being struck by an unsupported beam during a lifting operation.

Jackson Engineering (Castlebar) Limited has been fined €30,000 following a guilty plea to a breach of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005.

On 1 September 2018, at a manufacturing premises in Sligo Town, an employee became stuck by an unsupported steel beam. The beam fell during a lifting operation, when a crane was being erected inside the manufacturing premises. The employee sustained serious injuries which resulted in the amputation of his right leg.

The company pleaded guilty to Section 8(2)(a) of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 contrary to Section 77(9)(a), in that it failed to manage and conduct its undertaking and, as a result, their employee, suffered serious personal injury.

The company also pleaded guilty to Regulation 42(a) of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Applications) Regulations, 2007 contrary to Section 77(9)(a) of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act, 2005  in that it failed to provide a system of work in relation to the lifting, movement and attachment of a jib section of a crane that was planned, organised, performed, maintained and revised to be safe and without risk health and as a result their employee suffered serious personal injury.

Chief Inspector with the Health and Safety Authority, Mark Cullen, said: “The circumstances of this accident, which resulted in an employee receiving serious personal injuries, should be warning to all employers to make sure that they manage and conduct their work activities to ensure the safety of their employees. It is important to ensure that contractors can manage and conduct all their work activities in a safe manner. In particular, as can be seen by this tragic case, it is important that safe systems of work are in place to ensure that persons carrying out the work can do so in a safe manner.”

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