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Former director sentenced after worker is impaled by spike

News | 1st Oct 2019

The former director of a now-dissolved landscaping company has been fined after a worker was impaled with a spike.

On 25th August 2016, a worker for R K United Ltd was operating a lorry loader crane to deliver a load of soil to a house. As the worker brought the crane arm down, his left arm was impaled on a spike that was protruding from the control system. The impact of the spike caused several bones in the worker’s arm to shatter.

An investigation carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the crane had severe defects, including a disabled safety system, and part of the safety guard around the controls had been cut off, leaving the spike. In addition, the operator had not received appropriate training to operate the lorry loader crane.

The director of R K United Ltd, Hafeez Ghafoor, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 37 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. He received a 12-month prison sentence, which was suspended for two years, and was ordered to complete 200 hours of community service.

On the incident, HSE inspector, Yolande Burns-Sleightholme, commented “This injury was easily preventable, and the risk should have been identified. The lorry loader crane should have been properly maintained, regular inspections carried out, and a thorough examination taken place every twelve months. The disabled safety system would have been found during the examination, ensuring that this incident could not have occurred.”

Source: SHP Online, Worker impaled on spike, 24th September 2019. Read the full article.