Agency worker suffered multiple injuries after being crushed while unloading lorry

A logistics company has been fined £373,000 after a worker was crushed while unloading a vehicle from a visiting delivery lorry.

Southend Magistrates’ Court heard how an agency worker was unchaining a vehicle ramp from a delivery lorry when the vehicle moved forward with one chain still attached to the ramp, crushing the worker between the ramp and a barrier.

Injuries sustained included multiple fractures to the pelvis, nerve damage in both legs and internal injuries.

Eriks Industrial Services
Investigating the incident, which happened on 14 December 2015, the HSE found that Eriks Industrial Services had failed to fully control the risks arising from the operation of vehicle loading and unloading ramps. Furthermore, the company:

  • did not implement suitably robust systems of work
  • did not provide sufficient training to allow workers to safely unload vehicles
  • failed to appropriately brief visiting drivers on their role in this activity.

£373k fine
Eriks Industrial Services of Amber Way, Halesowen, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined £373,000 and ordered to pay costs of £8,333.

Responsibility
Speaking after the case, HSE inspector Tim Underwood said: “This incident could have been avoided if the company had created a more detailed risk assessment and introduced a fully considered safe system of work.

“Removing the visiting lorry driver’s keys until the procedure was safely completed, is one such method which could have prevented such an occurrence.

“Companies have a responsibility to provide sufficient information, instruction and training to all those involved in workplace transport operations (including visiting delivery drivers), in order to control the risk of serious personal injury.”

Agency worker suffered multiple injuries after being crushed while unloading lorry

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