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Recycling firm fined by magistrates
4:00pm Monday 10th September 2012 in News
A recycling firm, which ignored warnings about safety at its plant in Latchford has been fined after a worker was hit by a forklift truck.
The truck was carrying a large bale of crushed aluminium cans when it hit the 43-year-old man as he walked across the warehouse floor at the Novelis UK ltd site in Thelwall Lane.
He suffered damage to his ankles and feet during the incident on November 18 2010.
Warrington Magistrates Court heard last week how HSE inspectors had given Novelis guidance on improving safety four months prior to the incident.
Workers at the plant had raised concerns that vehicles and pedestrians were not segregated well enough.
Forklift trucks were regularly used in the warehouse, but there was not an adequate system in place to keep workers safe, the court heard.
Novelis UK Ltd pleaded guilty to a breach of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 by failing to ensure workers and vehicles could move safely around the site. The company was fined £6,000 and ordered to pay £3,365 costs.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector Martin Heywood, HSE Inspector, said: ““Novelis received previous warnings from HSE and its own workers about how vehicles operated in the warehouse, but it failed to act on these.
“The company didn’t carry out a proper assessment of the risks and, as a result, there was no system for keeping forklift trucks away from pedestrians.
“It has since made significant improvements and forklifts can now operate safely within the warehouse.
“However, it’s disappointing that it took the injury of a worker for these changes to be made.”