Forklift accidents

Woman has leg skinned by fork lift truck

A well known supermarket was slammed for 'extremeforklift skins woman's leg carelessness' by a crown court judge. Judge Harvey Clark, sentencing at Dorchester Crown Court, criticised the retail giant after the accident left a former employee often confined to a wheelchair or crutches. The court heard how the 42-year-old was working in the warehouse at the back of the store in Weymouth, Dorset when the accident happened in November 2005.

She was stacking the bottom shelf in the storage room next to a doorway when a fork lift truck drove through from the adjoining room. Its load took the skin off her left leg as it made contact.

Prosecuting for the Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, Scott Stemp said that the fork lift truck operator could not see where he was driving because his vehicle was overloaded. There was also no clear demarcation between pedestrian areas and workplace vehicles.

Although the company's head office had carried out a transport survey of the site, its findings were not acted upon. The company pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the HSWA 1974. In mitigation, the company said that since the accident, it had spent almost £30,000 on health and safety measures.
It was fined £80,000, and ordered to pay £17,500 in prosecution costs.