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Essex car parts manufacturer fined for safety failings

An Essex car parts manufacturer has been prosecuted for safety failings after an employee fell through a mezzanine floor at a Hawkwell factory.

The Auto-Plas worker required stitches to a hand injury and was off works for two weeks as a result of the incident on 17 May last year.

On 18 July, Southend Magistrates’ Court heard that he had been asked to dismantle a mezzanine floor in a production area at Auto-Plas’s sister company Benchmark Doors Ltd. He fell backwards through a gap in the floor to the level below, hitting his head on the floor and cutting his right hand as he tried to break his fall.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) identified that a risk assessment had not been completed for the work, and no measures were taken to protect the employee while he was working at height.

Auto-Plas (International) Ltd., of 90 Main Road, Hawkwell, Essex, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 6(3) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005. The company was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £2,502.45 in costs.  The company was also asked to pay £200 compensation to the injured worker as well as a £15 victim surcharge.


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