A company which manufactures adhesive tape has been fined after a worker suffered fatal crush injuries while operating a rewind slitting machine in its factory in April 2018.
The worker was drawn into the machine designed to cut a large roll of adhesive material into narrower rolls.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the worker was required to work close to an unguarded in-running nip whilst the machine was in operation, presenting a hazard due to rotating parts.
The risk assessment failed to identify the in-running nips and other hazards which meant machine operators were provided with inadequate information and training, placing them at severe risk of injury.
The company, Scapa UK Limited of Ashton Under Lyne, previously received advice in 2012 from both HSE and an external consultant in relation to the guarding of machinery on site, but failed to take appropriate action. They were found guilty of breaching Section 21 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, and the company was fined £120,000 and ordered to pay full costs.
In a separate incident in Leeds in November 2018, a company was also fined £120,000 for breaching the same act after a worker broke his upper arm and suffered crush injuries to his lower arm. The incident happened when a metal cover plate of a vertical borer machine slipped off an overhead crane during an attempt to lift the cover to clean underneath it2.
The worker had to undergo several long operations and is unlikely to regain full function in his right arm. An HSE investigation into the incident at the Leeds and Bradford Boiler Company found that there was no safe system of work for this activity.