Corporate Manslaughter prosecution of Waste company
On 22 January 2015, a 29-year-old employee suffered a fatal injury at Master Construction (Skips) Limited. He was working on a trommel at the company based in Sparkhill when he became entangled in it and he died as a result of injuries to his head and chest. The trommel was described as being ‘in a dilapidated, ramshackle and lethal state with unguarded moving parts and no emergency stops’.
The company is now in liquidation and has accepted a charge of corporate manslaughter. The company was also fined £255,000.
A director of the company who was responsible for Health and Safety on the site was been given a 12-month custodial sentence which was suspended for 2 years for breaching S37 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. The director also undertook 300 hours of unpaid work and is suspended from holding a directorship for 8 years.
The tragic death could have been avoided if basic safeguards had been placed on the machinery but the director failed to provide employees with the safe equipment they needed and a safe system of work.
The waste and recycling industry is known to be high risk and because of this the HSE is looking at safeguarding machinery to ensure control of risk.