Health and Safety News

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Equipment supplier fined after County Durham worker's hand severed

A worker from County Durham had his hand severed while carrying out maintenance on glass cutting machinery a court heard.

The 34-year-old maintenance technician was investigating a fault on a new tilt table with a colleague at the UK’s largest glass manufacturer Solaglas.

Lisec (UK and Ireland) Ltd. was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) following the incident at Solaglas (Architectural) Ltd, in Bishop Auckland on 12 September 2007. The table was part of a glass cutting line manufactured and installed by Lisec (UK and Ireland) Ltd at the Solaglas plant just four months earlier in May 2007.

An HSE investigation found that there were faults within the programme controlling the movement of the glass as it allowed the glass sheet to be released, even when an emergency stop had been activated and that this fault was exacerbated by the installation of the new tilt table and the failure to integrate it properly with the existing equipment.

Although the incident happened to a Solaglas employee at their premises, it occurred due to a fault on a new glass cutting line which had been installed by Lisec (UK and Ireland) Ltd.. Lisec was prosecuted as they had not complied with the legal duties imposed on installers of machinery.

Lisec (UK and Ireland) Ltd., of Springfield Industrial Estate, Telford, Shropshire, was today (29 May) found guilty following a month-long trial to breaching Section 6(3) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £100,000 and ordered to pay costs of £150,000.


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