A Nottinghamshire worktop manufacturer, have been prosecuted for breaching Regulation 11(1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998.

Regulation 11(1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 relates to dangerous parts of machinery. It requires employers to take measures to prevent access to dangerous parts of machinery, and stop the movement of any dangerous parts of machinery before any part of person enters what is referred to as a ‘danger zone’, by taking steps such as providing guards, protection devices and instruction, training and supervision.

The circumstances of the accident that gave rise to the prosecution were that the employee was operating an edge banding machine when his hand came into contact with a blade on the machine that is used to create the finished edges on the worktops. As a result of the accident the employee had 2 fingers amputated, required several months off work and may require further surgery. As a result of this breach of the Regulations the company were fined and ordered to pay costs.

It was established by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) who investigated the matter that effective guards should have been on the machinery. If the machine had guards, which had to be in place in order for it to be operated this would have prevented the employee being exposed to such a risk.

If the company had undertaken a suitable risk assessment of the machine and it was identified that the machine was unguarded the accident could have been prevented, a guard would have been fitted and appropriate steps taken to ensure the safety of employees. As a result of this failure the employee has suffered life-changing injuries.

Employers have a duty to provide safe premises, a safe system of work and safe plant, material and equipment. If you have had an accident at work and have sustained injury as a result caused by the negligence of your employers then contact our team at Ringrose Law on 01522 561020 to see if you have the potential to pursue a claim.


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