Manufacturing company fined after employee crushed to death

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A fine of £18,000 has been issued to a manufacturing company after an employee was crushed to death under the forks of a side-loader lift truck

It was reported to Dudley Magistrates’ Court that on 2 September 2019, a Cutting Edge Trading Limited employee, Mitchell Poutney, was fatally injured at the company site during a lifting operation on Station Road, Rowley Regis, West Midlands.

Poutney was crushed to death by the unsupported forks and carriage of a side-loader lift truck fell on him whilst he was working underneath it.

The verdict

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) conducted an investigation and reported that the company had failed to provide a safe system of work for unloading palletised goods using the side-loader forklift truck.

Cutting Edge Trading Limited of Station Road Industrial Estate, Rowley Regis, West Midlands pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and have been fined £18,000 and ordered to pay costs of £10,153.

Following the hearing, HSE Principal Inspector Jenny Skeldon commented:

“This tragic incident could have easily been prevented if this employer had acted to identify and manage the risks involved and put a safe system of work in place.”

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