Forklift accidents

Company fined after telehandler overturns

A construction company has been ordered to pay £4,500 after one of its workers was seriously injured when a forklift truck telehandler he was operating overturned.

The Health and Safety executive brought the prosecution after the company pleaded guilty to breaching section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The company was fined £4,500 and ordered to pay costs of over £2000 plus a victim surcharge.

The victim was lifting roof trusses onto the roof of a development when the fork lift truck telehandler that he was operating overturned. The machine fell onto its side throwing the victim against the machine’s window and controls.
The victim was not trained to use the machine and was not wearing a seatbelt when the incident happened. He suffered multiple fractures to his right arm, leaving him with limited mobility in his shoulder; he still requires medical treatment and is unable to return to his job.

A HSE construction inspector stated that the company failed to ensure the victim had the necessary training to use the machine and had not reviewed its processes to ensure that unauthorised personnel did not have access to specialist machinery on site.
The company had a risk assessment and a system of work for lifting roof trusses but neither were sufficient and had failed to identify the dangers that workers would face.

This incident demonstrates how important it is for construction companies to effectively manage health and safety at all levels within the business.