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Paper company fined for forklift crush accident

Photo shows the aisle at Swan Mill Paper Company Ltd where the worker was injured by a reversing forklift truck

A Swanley firm has been prosecuted after a worker at its warehouse was injured after being crushed between a forklift truck and a pallet of paper goods.

The Swan Mill Paper Company Ltd. appeared at Sevenoaks Magistrates’ Court (7 May) and admitted safety failings that led to its employee, a local man, suffering several fractures to his leg and foot.

The incident, on 12 October 2011, was investigated by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), which prosecuted the company after finding that it could have been avoided if simple safety precautions had been taken.

The court was told that the man was in an aisle in the warehouse taking tickets off pallets that were filled with paper goods. The pallets were then to be put on racks at either side of the aisle. A colleague using a forklift truck to stack the pallets on the right hand side of the same aisle, reversed and backed into the worker, crushing him between the truck and the pallet.

The man suffered three breaks in his right ankle as well as two fractures to his left leg. He has since returned to work at the firm on light duties.

Swan Mill Paper Company, registered in Bloomsbury Street, London, was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £3,069 in costs after admitting a breach of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 at the Old Warehouse, Goldsel Road, Swanley.


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