May 17, 2018

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Tesco fined £1.6m after driver reversed into a member of the public

Supermarket chain Tesco has been fined £1.6m following a prosecution brought by Ealing Council.

The supermarket chain pleaded guilty to two health and safety offences, dating from August 2014 when a Tesco driver reversed into a member of the public at the Tesco Metro store on Greenford Road loading bay.

The victim suffered multiple serious and life-changing injuries after becoming wedged between the vehicle and loading bay.

After an investigation, the council found Tesco had failed to assess the risk of vehicles and pedestrians using the premises’ car park and failed to stop the driver performing an unassisted reverse.

Performing an unassisted reverse is against Tesco’s internal procedures, but the company has now made changes to Greenford Road car park which will ensure better public safety.

A judge at Isleworth Crown Court ordered Tesco to pay fines of £800,000 for both offences. Tesco also agreed to pay the council’s costs of £50,000.

Cllr Julian Bell, Leader of the Council, said: “This is a great result for the council. I am very pleased that the court has recognised the seriousness of these offences and imposed a fine reflecting this.

“We will always the prioritise the safety of local people and this investigation has secured changes to the layout of the car park in question which will hopefully reduce the chances of another tragic incident such as this occurring.”

Since the investigation, Tesco says it has made improvements to the car park layout, which includes installing barriers to prevent access to the area by private vehicles and pedestrians when delivery vehicles are manoeuvring.

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