Forklift accidents

Buxton food packaging firm in court over forklift injuries

A food packaging company in Buxton has been fined after an employee suffered severe injuries to his leg when he was struck by a forklift truck.

The company was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after an investigation found it did not have a safe system of work in place at its factory at Staden Park.

High Peak Magistrates’ Court in Buxton heard that the injured worker had just given some cleaning materials to a colleague, who was working on a machine, when the incident happened on 20 November 2012.

As he stepped backwards to turn around, he was hit by a forklift truck carrying a large reel of printed film. The 42 year old from Buxton broke his right leg in three places and was in hospital for six days, where he had metal bars and pins inserted.

The court was told there should have been a separate walkway to keep pedestrians away from vehicles, or the company should have found another way of moving goods around the factory.

Following the incident, the firm began using pallet trucks which are much safer than forklifts as they are operated by someone walking behind them and run at a slower speed.

The company, of Staden Lane in Buxton, was fined £30,000 and ordered to pay £2,979 in prosecution costs after pleading guilty to single breaches of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.