July 23, 2019

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In court

Life changing injuries due to unsafe working practice

A Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) driver was struck by a paper reel that was being loaded on to his trailer, suffering several fractures to his lower body.

On 7 September 2016, an agency HGV driver working for Jenkins Shipping Company Limited at its Liverpool depot was assisting in the loading of paper reels onto his HGV trailer, when a reel slipped from the clamp attachment of the fork lift truck being used to load the reels striking the driver’s lower body and legs. He sustained several lower limb fractures.

Investigating, the HSE found that HGV drivers working for the shipping firm regularly assisted with loading operations by either holding back the curtain of the HGV trailer or strapping the reels ready for transit, placing individuals either near the drop zone or moving vehicles. The company failed to have a safe system of work in place to keep pedestrians and vehicles separate during loading operations.

Jenkins Shipping Company Limited of West Bank Road, Belfast, pleaded guilty to breaching sections 2(1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The company was fined £30,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,306.16.

HSE inspector Catherine Lyon said after the hearing: “By ensuring a suitable safe system of work was in place and implemented, the life changing injuries sustained by the HGV driver could have been avoided. Suitable safe systems include ensuring that pedestrians are located in a safe area, away from moving vehicles and falling loads.”

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