Wirral-Based Company Fined After Worker’s Arm Caught in Machinery

A manufacturer of composite hose products has been fined after an inexperienced agency worker sustained injuries when he pulled into a spinning lathe. The worker had been operating a lathe at a site in Bromborough when the sleeve of his shirt became trapped between a pitch wheel and a rotating mandrel, pulling his arm into the machine.

This caused an open fracture of the ulna (long bone found in the forearm) and the radial shaft of his right arm. The injury has left him permanently weak and has made day-to-day tasks difficult and stressful to complete. In addition, he endured severe bruising to his body and skin abrasions.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) subsequently investigated the safety standards of the company and found:

  • They had not spotted the risk of entrapment nor the appropriate measures to avoid it. Additionally, this risk was increased due to a modification of the lathe which brought operators closer to the entrapment hazard.
  • They had failed to effectively restrict access to dangerous parts of the machinery
  • They had failed to develop a safe system of work for the tasks and had not given adequate instruction and training to enable workers to operate the machinery competently.

Novaflex Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching Sections 2 and 3 of Heath and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company was fined £22,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,021.30.