Huge Fine For KFC After Teesside Workers Scalded

The world’s second biggest fast food chain has been handed a fine of just under £1m after two Teesside workers were injured by scalding gravy.

Kentucky Fried Chicken (Great Britain) Limited admitted offences relating to employees at its Teesside Park branch and the Wellington Square takeaway in Stockton.

In the Teesside Park incident, in July 2014, a 16-year-old sustained severe burns to his hands and arms after being told to take a container of steaming gravy out of a microwave oven. The boy was not wearing the special protective gloves he should have been provided with.

Seventeen months later, in December 2015, a female worker at KFC in Wellington Square suffered severe burns when a container of boiling gravy spilt and splashed her body as she took it out of a microwave oven.

Two days after the second incident officers from Stockton Borough Council’s Environmental Health Department paid a visit to the Wellington Square branch to carry out an inspection.

They discovered that restaurant employees could not find spare gloves and the company was failing to insure that its own safety procedures were being observed.

Representatives for the firm said it invested £7.5m a year in health and safety and that workers at the two Stockton branches were given training.

They added that accidents of this type were extremely rare and said they had assisted the Environmental Health Department with their investigation from start to finish.

Kentucky Fried Chicken (Great Britain) Limited had admitted two breaches of the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act at a previous Teesside Magistrates Court hearing.

Teesside Crown Court fined the firm £950,000 plus £18,700 costs.

Stockton Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Access, Communities and Community Safety, Councillor Steve Nelson, said: “This is a huge fine that sends out a very clear message that all food business operators have a duty to ensure the health and safety of their employees and provide them with suitable training.

“Kentucky Fried Chicken (Great Britain) Limited did not maintain this responsibility and as a result, two of its employees suffered extremely painful but preventable injuries.

“Environmental Health officers conducted a very thorough investigation into these two very serious incidents, which has enabled us to bring this prosecution. Our officers are also available to offer advice to businesses and their employees on health and safety issues in the workplace.”

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