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Metal recycler fined after worker loses arm in machinery

Date: Tue, 23 Apr 2013 | Author: Paul Sanderson

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A Lincoln-man suffered life-changing injuries because of a series of safety failings at the waste recycling plant in which he worked in Scunthorpe, a court has heard.

The 25 year-old worker had his arm severed when he tried to clear a blockage on a conveyor forming part of a metal sorting line. He was in hospital for a week, but surgeons were unable to reattach his arm.

He has been unable to return to work since the incident at the former City Scrap Ltd site in Mannaberg Way, Scunthorpe on 8 March 2011.

Following an investigation, the Health & Safety Executive prosecuted City Scrap Ltd at Scunthorpe Magistrates’ Court after uncovering a catalogue of dangers at the site.

They included an absence of or poor guarding  around moving machine parts, no emergency stop buttons on processing lines, a lack of safe system work and inadequate training for employees.

The court was told that the man, who was 23 at the time, had been working on a picking station taking off pieces of copper, when he noticed something was caught. He attempted to clear the picking line with a stick, but his right arm was drawn into the machine and severed at the shoulder.

City Scrap Ltd of Dale Street, Lincoln was fined £20,000 and ordered to pay £8,964 in costs following a guilty plea.

HSE inspector Andrew Gale said: “A young man suffered horrific, life-changing injuries in an incident that was easily preventable.

“City Scrap Ltd should have had fixed guarding, properly secured, to prevent access to dangerous moving parts. In addition, safe procedures should have been in place for clearing blockages, including isolation of power to the machinery.

“The waste and recycling sector has one of the worst records for injury accidents across all industries and yet the dangers of working with machinery and in the waste business are well known. Employers must ensure they take effective measures to address these risks and properly train their staff to carry out tasks safely.”

Category: Recycling
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