Tuesday 14 January 2014

Poor crane practice results in £80,000 fine

Renold Power Transmission Ltd., fined £80,000 after a worker’s left hand was badly mangled in the hook on a crane because lifting chains were unavailable.
The circumstances were:
  • The accident occurred to David Taylor on 14 September 2011.
  • Mr Taylor was operating an overhead crane in the tool preparation area to lift equipment weighing nearly 300kg, using straps that had already been placed around it.
  • The company had failed to produce a written risk assessment for the work. 
  • There was not a safe system of work in place. 
  • Mr Taylor had also never received any formal training to use the crane, despite working for the firm for nearly three months.
  • As he moved the crane with a poorly-labelled handheld control, the equipment slipped out of the straps and started to fall towards him. 
  • He raised his left hand to protect himself but it became caught in one of the straps and was pulled into the crane’s hook.
  • Mr Taylor lost half his thumb, the tip of his index finger, two thirds of his middle and ring fingers, and all of the little finger on his left hand.

The HSE  inspector stated:
“One of Renold’s employees has suffered severe injuries to his left hand that will affect him for the rest of his life due to the company’s poor safety system for using the crane. It’s shocking that the chains produced by the company weren’t even available on the day of the incident for use by its own employees. Instead, David had to use an unchoked sling to lift a heavy tool, which led to him being badly injured. If the tool had been properly secured before being lifted then his injuries could have been avoided.

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