Courts continue to ramp up health and safety fines
A manufacturing company has been required to pay over £300,000 in fines and prosecution costs for health and safety failings after an HSE visit.
Maidstone Crown Court heard how an external consultant highlighted a number of concerns eight months prior to the visit by HSE.
Inspection of the premises found that hazards to be addressed included electrical safety, machinery guarding and the safe storage of materials.
The visits followed concerns raised by a former employee and as a result HSE issued a total of 14 Enforcement Notices.
Risk management is a legal requirement not an ‘ideal’
W E Roberts (Corrugated) Limited, of Boyne Park, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, pleaded guilty to breaching:
- Regulation 11 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER);
- Regulation 4(2) of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989, and
- Regulation 5(1) of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999
The company was fined £297,000 and ordered to pay prosecution costs of £14,180.
HSE inspector Robert Hassell said after the hearing:
“The need to effectively manage health and safety is not an ideal, it is a regulatory requirement. Employers need to ensure that any issues in relation to health and safety in the workplace that are brought to their attention need to be suitably addressed.”