Injured Worker ‘Could Have Been Killed’

One of the UK’s biggest recycling firms has been fined £200,000 after a worker suffered serious injuries when he was hit by a 7.5-tonne telehandler vehicle.

Sita UK Ltd did not ensure there was sufficient segregation between vehicles and pedestrians at its premises in Darwen, Lancashire.

The worker walked behind a stationary telehandler as he crossed an outdoor area used to hand-sort plastics.

But the vehicle started reversing, hitting the employee and knocking him to the floor, where he was run over by the telehandler’s back wheels.

His injuries were so severe that he remained in hospital for two months.

Prosecuting the case, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) told Preston Crown Court the company identified the risks but had not implemented adequate steps to prevent pedestrians being hit by vehicles.

HSE inspector Stuart Kitchingman said: “Employers need to look carefully at their workplaces regularly to make sure that pedestrian routes are clearly marked and physically separated from vehicle routes wherever possible.

“The employee could have easily been killed and still has severe mobility problems as a result of the accident. He is unlikely to be able to work in the near future.”

Sita UK Ltd, of Grenfell Road, Maidenhead, Berkshire, was fined £200,000 with £11,998 costs after admitting an offence under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Macks Solicitors in Middlesbrough, Redcar and Darlington specialise in advising people who are injured in accidents, including workplace injuries. Call us on 0800 882 4894 to discuss your case with one of our expert personal injury lawyers.

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