Aldi Stored Ltd have been fined £1 million, with further costs of £70,000 after a delivery driver received severe injuries to his foot whilst operating an electric pallet truck.
The incident, which occurred in November 2013 at the Somercotes store, involved a worker who had only been in the job for two weeks, delivering goods to stores. Aldi’s current training process involves new drivers operating current drivers before they commence working on their own. No standardised training programme is in place to ensure that drivers have the knowledge and skills necessary to safely and efficiently operate materials handling equipment.
The driver suffered fractures to all of the toes on his left foot after operating an electric pallet truck, with two of them surgically amputated. His foot required reconstruction with wires and he was off work for nearly six months in recovery. The driver has since returned to work with Aldi Stores, but with life-changing injuries, including daily pain within his foot.
In the hearing, Aldi Stores admitted that the training provided by them to their staff should have been on a formal basis and more structured. The judge acknowledged Aldi’s guilt and noted that due to previous incidents that had occurred in the company, a refresh of training to operators should have occurred sooner.
A spokesperson for Aldi said: “The safety of our employees and customers is of paramount importance to Aldi. This isolated accident occurred more than three years ago. We are absolutely committed to maintaining health and safety procedures and training that ensure Aldi is a safe place to be for our employees and customers.”
Julia Cope, Lead Investigating Officer from Amber Valley Borough Council, who prosecuted Aldi Stores Ltd, commented: “This accident resulted in very nasty injuries to a driver who had been asked to carry out work using equipment for which his employer had failed to provide structured and necessary formal training.”
Source: SHP Online, Aldi Stores fines £1m for worker’s severe injuries, 18th July 2017. Read the full article.