Head Of Training, The Healthy Work Company

June 13, 2016

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Work experience student fatally crushed by vehicle, court hears

A motor vehicle repair company has been fined £33,000 after a 27-year-old man, who was gaining work experience at the garage, was crushed to death by a vehicle that had been left in gear.

Trafford Magistrates’ Court heard on 20 December 2014, Muhammed Zohaib Yasin, had been working at, Just Mercedes Limited, watching another employee carry out repair work on a Vauxhall Corsa.

Mr Yasin was at the front of the vehicle as he added some antifreeze to the engine. The mechanic went to the driver’s side opened the door and turned the ignition on from outside of the vehicle. The vehicle shot forward trapping and crushing the young man, who later died from his injuries.

A Health and Safety (HSE) investigation found no defects with the vehicle, but it had instead been left in gear with the handbrake off.

HSE found that the employees of Just Mercedes Limited had not been given any specific instructions on selecting gears and use of handbrake when parking vehicles, on or off ramps. No specific instructions had been given to employees on operating the ignition from outside of the vehicle. There was no system in place for storage of keys.

HSE inspector Lisa Bailey said after the hearing: “Had the company ensured employees were trained and instructed on moving vehicles around the garage safely then this tragic incident might not have occurred.”

Just Mercedes Ltd, of Shentonfield Road, Sharston Industrial Area, Wythenshawe, Manchester, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) and Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, and were fined £33,000 with £12,000 costs.

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Bob Wallace
Bob Wallace
5 years ago

Have we really got to the point where mechanics need to receive formalised training, with records to verify; to apply hand-brakes, not leave vehicles in gear and start engines from the driver’s seat? I guess the size of the fine reflects the Magistrates thoughts on this as well.

steve paul
steve paul
5 years ago

Goodness me , we will next be having to tell people to tie their own shoelaces.