October 23, 2017

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Plea to recycling sector following double amputation

A recycling company has been fined following an incident in which a worker was left with life changing injuries after he was struck by a moving machine.

The worker was released from hospital on Christmas Eve, having lost both legs just below the knees.

Shrewsbury Crown Court heard how, on 5 December 2014, the employer was working as a litter picker at Lodgewood Farm, Telford, when he was struck by a shovel loader as he was standing next to a brick wall on the site.

The HSE’s investigation revealed that the loading shovel driver initially thought he had just hit the wall and had not realised he had struck someone. The driver climbed down from the cab to check for damage and found the employee badly injured on the floor.

The worker was air lifted to hospital, where he underwent emergency surgery. He was released from hospital on Christmas Eve, having lost both legs just below the knees.

Every worker has the right to return from work safe in the knowledge that their employer takes their health and safety seriously – HSE

James Moody Recycling Limited of Hollybush Farm, Wolverhampton, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company was fined £100,000 and ordered to pay costs of £17,641.62.

The waste and recycling sector, which is made up of around 120,000 workers, has a statistically higher rate of workplace injury and work-related ill health than other sectors.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector David Kivlin said: “This is a heart-breaking story where a worker suffered horrendous injuries.

“It is vital that organisations have proper risk management in place when pedestrians and large industrial machinery are working closely together.

“The waste and recycling sector, which is made up of around 120,000 workers, has a statistically higher rate of workplace injury and work-related ill health than other sectors.

“In trying to address this issue, HSE is currently in the middle of targeting the sector with an inspection initiative that will look at certain activities to ensure effective management and control of risk.

“We are calling on anyone working in the industry to take the time to refresh their knowledge of our advice and guidance, available for free on our website. Every worker has the right to return from work safe in the knowledge that their employer takes their health and safety seriously.”

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Vince Butler
Vince Butler
2 years ago

It would appear this company is or was part of Jack Moody Holdings plc from newspaper reports at the time of the incident and the company website; addresses etc. seem to be the same place. I wonder why the sentencing guidelines don’t appear to have been applied – OR – maybe there is some additional information not reported in the SHP article.

Gary Magee
Gary Magee
2 years ago

I worked in the recycling industry for 15-years and visited many facilities good and bad. The industry is dealing in commodities such as paper, cardboard, plastic and metals where margins can vary enormously and there is always a strong focus on costs. Hazards in the waste sector are many and varied including the waste itself with needles, sharps and biological hazards, there are uneven surfaces, unguarded pits, rats and vermin, heavy moving machinery, compactors, balers and many, many more. For much of the workforce, English is a second language and the overseas attitude about safe working practice does not always… Read more »