A private security company has been fined after an employee suffered life-changing injuries when he was assaulted by four individuals at a young offender’s training facility in Milton Keynes. Milton Keynes Magistrate’s Court heard how on 15 March 2017, the secure care officer (SCO) was working alone with a group of six trainees, who were taking part in a scheduled activity on the outdoor fenced football pitch at the Oakhill Secure Training Centre in Milton Keynes. The SCO had only worked for the company for around three or four months.
During the activity one of the individuals attempted to climb the fence. The incident escalated and the SCO attempted to deal with it alone, the situation became hostile and he was attacked by four of the individuals. The SCO sustained multiple injuries to his head and body and was taken to hospital by ambulance where he was put in an induced coma for three weeks. He suffered brain damage and had a plate fitted in his skull. He spent a further two months in a specialist brain injury rehabilitation centre.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that G4S Care and Justice Services (UK) Ltd failed to ensure robust procedures were put in place, to ensure that inexperienced staff were not working alone with groups of young people who presented a high risk of violence.
G4S Care and Justice Services (UK) Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching section 2(1) and Section 33(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. They were fined £250,000 and ordered to pay costs of £13,787.
British Airways Plc has been fined following a vehicle collision at Terminal 5 of Heathrow Airport. Southwark Crown Court heard that on 16 March 2018, an employee was struck by a tug pulling a train of dollies (vehicles used to transport baggage around the airport). She was knocked under another passing tug with dollies loaded with luggage, sustaining serious crush injuries.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the injured worker was using the centre of the roadway between the two lanes as a walking route and this unsafe practice had been commonplace in the baggage hall for at least ten years. The investigation also identified significant failings in the general management of health and safety and workplace transport risks, including issues relating to supervision and monitoring, risk assessment and training.
British Airways PLC of Waterside, Harmondsworth, Greater London pleaded guilty to breaching section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. The company was fined £1.8 million and ordered to pay costs of £35,724.
Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUFT) has been fined for failing to manage environmental risks within its mental health inpatient wards. These breaches were committed by North Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (NEPUFT) before EPUFT came into existence. Chelmsford Crown Court heard that, between 25 October 2004 and 31 March 2015, NEPUFT failed to effectively manage recognised risks from potential fixed ligature points in its inpatient wards, resulting in mental health patients being exposed to unacceptable and avoidable risk at a time when they were most vulnerable. Tragically eleven inpatients died during this timeframe whose deaths involved access to fixed ligature points.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that NEPUFT failed to adequately identify, or address with sufficient urgency, the significance of the environmental risks within its inpatient wards.
Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust of The Lodge, Lodge Approach, Runwell Wickford, Essex pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The Trust was fined £1,500,000 and ordered to pay costs of £ 86222.23.
Fruit juice manufacturer, AMC Freshly Squeezed (UK) Ltd, has been fined after an employee had three fingers of their right hand severed whilst cleaning a screw conveyor. Liverpool Magistrates’ Court heard that on the 25 July 2019, a production operative was carrying out the daily process of cleaning the extraction area at their premises in Whitemoss Business Park in Skelmersdale. Whilst the screw conveyor, which is used for removing waste pulp and peel from the building, was being cleaned the employee noticed that no water or debris was exiting the drain as it normally would. In an attempt to remove the blockage, the worker inserted their hand through the drain hole resulting in the severing of two fingers below the second knuckle and one below the first. The hospital attempted to reattach the fingers, but was unsuccessful. The worker has since been unable to resume their former employment.
AMC Freshly Squeezed (UK) Ltd of Degrave House, Whitemoss Business Park, Skelmersdale pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. They were fined £16,000 and ordered to pay costs of £2,400.
A warehouse management solutions company has been fined after an employee was electrocuted while servicing an air compressor. Maidstone Magistrates’ Court heard that on 8 December 2017, Andrew Meade was carrying out pre-planned maintenance on an air compressor at a distribution centre in Gravesend, when he was electrocuted. He was not found for more than an hour following the incident. His injuries were fatal.
Logistex Limited of Kettering Parkway, Kettering, Northamptonshire pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company was fined £180,000 and ordered to pay full costs of £23,358.16.
A facility services company operating at Winchester prison has been fined after a worker suffered a broken leg when he was struck by a forklift truck (FLT). Aldershot Magistrates’ Court heard that on 23 May 2019, the Gov Facility Services Limited employee was injured whilst carrying out inspections of drain covers adjacent to a workshop. He was struck by a FLT, breaking the bone in his right leg. The driver of the FLT was unloading boxes for a delivery to the canteen, his view was obscured by the load on the forks, preventing him from seeing the other employee.
Gov Facility Services Limited of Albany House, Petty France, London pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company was fined £30,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,636.38
A utilities company has been fined after a member of the public suffered fatal injuries after falling into an excavation on a footpath. Luton Crown Court, sitting at Knight’s Chamber in Peterborough Cathedral, heard that on 28 May 2017 M&S Water Services (Utilities) Ltd was digging on a footpath on
Devon Road, Luton to access a stop tap that needed replacing. The stop tap could not be reached by hand and so it was left protected by plastic barriers until a deep dig team could attend a few days later.
Agricultural machines manufacturer Superior Machines Ltd was fined for safety breaches, after a 68-year-old worker suffered life threatening injuries when he became entangled on a manual lathe. York Magistrates’ Court heard that on 25 January 2019, the worker became entangled on either the rotating workpiece or the chuck as it rotated. He sustained extensive injuries including a punctured lung, broken neck, fractures to the back, ribs, arm and shoulder blade. He subsequently had his left arm amputated at the shoulder.
Superior Machines Ltd of Pluckham Farm, Fridaythorpe, Driffield, East Riding of Yorkshire pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The company was fined £60,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,618.
A high school in Chelmsford has been fined after a young child died after a locker in a changing room fell on top of him. Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court heard that on the 23 May 2019, nine-year-old Leo Latifi was fatally injured when he attended an after-school swimming lesson at the sports centre of Great Baddow High School. The incident occurred whilst he and another young child had been waiting in the boy’s changing room for their lesson to start. The lockers, which had doors missing, stood prominently in the changing area provided a climbing frame to the children. As they climbed on the front of the unit it toppled forward. One child was able to jump free but tragically Leo could not and the locker fell on top of him.
Great Baddow High School, Duffield Road, Chelmsford pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and has been fined £16,700 and ordered to pay costs of £12,000.
A car dealership has been fined after two apprentices suffered chemical burns. Leicestershire Magistrates’ Court heard how on 15 March 2018 two apprentices were working at Mercedes-Benz of Northampton in Riverside Business Park, cleaning the vehicle ramps in the workshop using a chemical from an unlabeled barrel. The chemical caused burns to their hands and arms, which resulted in both of them being taken to hospital for treatment.
Cruickshank Motors Limited (trading as Mercedes-Benz of Northampton) of Penman Way, Grove Park, Leicester was found guilty of breaching Regulation 7(1) of the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002. The company was fined £360,000 and ordered to pay costs of £12,622.
Offshore oil company Apache has been sentenced after they failed to provide written safety procedures for the depressurisation of an oil well, which led to the release of more than 1000kg of hydrocarbon gas at their Beryl Alpha production installation in the North Sea. Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard how, on 2 June 2014, Apache had allocated a production technician to carry out a depressurisation task on one of their oil wells, which he had performed on previous occasions. However, they failed to provide him with any written safety procedures, expecting him to carry out this complex task from memory.
Apache Beryl Limited of Caledonia House, Prime Four Business Park, Kingswells Causeway, Aberdeen pleaded guilty to breaching regulation nine of the Offshore Installations Prevention of Fire and Explosion, and Emergency Response Regulations 1995 (PFEER). They were fined £400,000.
A Liverpool care agency, that supports people with mental health issues, its manager and a care home have been fined after an employee was stabbed by one of its residents. Liverpool Crown Court heard that on the 2 November 2014 an employee of Options for Supported Living was undertaking a regular scheduled visit to assist the transition of services for a resident from Fulwood Care Ltd at Ampthill Road, Aigburth to Options for Supported Living. During the visit, the untrained Options employee was left alone in the kitchen with the individual despite the care plan stating that the resident, whose violence and aggression had been clearly identified, required the attendance of two care workers at all times. Whilst the employee was unaccompanied, the resident crossed the kitchen and stabbed the employee in the right side of her neck. While the employee made a physical recovery, she has suffered post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and long-term psychological trauma and is still receiving counselling.
Options for Supported Living Ltd of St Nicholas House, Old Church Yard, Liverpool, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £31,000 and ordered to pay £10,000 towards costs. Fulwood Care Ltd of Ampthill Road, Aigburth, Liverpool pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £14,000 and ordered to pay £10,000 towards costs. Marie Binns of Queens Drive, West Derby, Liverpool accepted a formal caution with regard to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974.