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Drive to improve recycling sector safety outlined following latest court case

24 October 2017

Safety failings within the waste and recycling sector were highlighted following a recent court case relating to an incident where a worker lost both legs.

Shrewsbury Crown Court was told that the incident occurred on 5 December 2014, when the man was struck by a loader at Lodgewood Farm in Telford, Shropshire.

He had been collecting litter and the subsequent investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the driver of the loader initially believed his vehicle had struck a wall.

The injured worker was air lifted to hospital, where both legs were amputated just below the knee.

James Moody Recycling of Hollybush Farm, Wolverhampton, was handed a fine of £100,000 with costs of more than £17,600, after pleading guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work, etc, Act 1974.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector David Kivlin described the incident as "heart-breaking", resulting in "horrendous injuries" for the victim.

Further stating that it is vital for organisations to "have proper risk management in place when pedestrians and large industrial machinery are working closely together", Mr Kivlin outlined the issues emerging from the sector.

"The waste and recycling sector, which is made up of around 120,000 workers, has a statistically higher rate of workplace injury and work-related ill health than other sectors.

"In trying to address this issue, HSE is currently in the middle of targeting the sector with an inspection initiative that will look at certain activities to ensure effective management and control of risk.

"We are calling on anyone working in the industry to take the time to refresh their knowledge of our advice and guidance, available for free on our website.

"Every worker has the right to return from work safe in the knowledge that their employer takes their health and safety seriously," said Mr Kivlin.

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