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Damaged machine guard did not protect worker

02 October 2019

AN AGRICULTURAL company based in Hereford has been fined after an employee was seriously injured when working on a bio-chopper machine.

Telford Magistrates’ Court heard that on 6 October 2017 an employee of the company sustained fractures to her left lower arm when she was pulled into the machine at the site on Homme Farm in Ross-on-Wye.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that due to damage to the guard on the Bio-Chopper the company had devised a system of work which involved feeding a sheet of material into the machine. The machine was not adequately guarded, there was no safe system of work and no suitable training for the injured worker.

E C Drummond (Agriculture) Limited of Homme Farm, Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and has been fined £226,000 and ordered to pay costs of £11,564.10.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Steve Richardson said: “This injury could have been easily prevented, and the risk of injury should have been identified.

“Employers should make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk from dangerous parts of machinery.”