When employees join a new business, their employee handbook will outline the rules and regulations that they must adhere to.
Not only will this detail information regarding the day-to-day completion of their job but it will also point towards health and safety procedures that they are obligated to follow. Additionally, it will likely highlight the employer’s responsibilities and how they endeavour to keep them safe and protected at work.
However, a company has been slammed with a hefty £1.2million fine after one employee lost part of his arm following an accident involving a piece of workplace equipment – Lincolnshire Reporter shared.
Earlier this month, a court heard how an employee – who worked as a line operator at Mid UK Recycling Ltd in April 2015 – was removing waste from an axle when his glove got dragged into the in-running nip between the belt and the powered roller of the conveyor. As a result, the employee lost part of his arm.
Letsrecycle.com reported that a later investigation conducted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the firm had “failed to prevent access to dangerous parts of the conveyor”.
The firm pleaded guilty to breaching a section of the Health and Safety at Work Act etc 1974 – the act which is sought to protect the health, safety and welfare of employees, contractors, clients and visitors at work.
The prosecuted company no longer exists, and the firm was taken over by administrators earlier this year.
Sadly, this isn’t the only firm that has come under fire for flouting health and safety policies.
Earlier this year, HR Grapevine reported on a worker who was taken ill at work. The worker later died, and the boss of the company proceeded to dump the worker’s body in a forest rather than seek medical help from the emergency services.
According to reports, the individual was said to be working illegally which was the reason why the employer chose not to seek help.
The Health and Safety Act 1974
Under UK law, employers are responsible for health and safety management in their workplace.
Whenever it is reasonable and practical, employers do have a duty of care to protect the health, safety and welfare of their staff.
This includes measures such as risk assessments, educating and training staff on workplace risks and how to deal with them.
The basis for this is the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, which sets out the general duties that employers have towards employees, as well as members of the public.