Company ordered to pay �40k after accident

A COMPANY has been ordered to pay more than �40,000 after a worker at its Suffolk premises was seriously injured when a trailer toppled on him.

Jane Hunt

A COMPANY has been ordered to pay more than �40,000 after a worker at its Suffolk premises was seriously injured when a trailer toppled on him.

Peter Borley, 54, was crushed by the trailer and suffered chest and back injuries and has still not been able to return to work 17 months after the accident.

His employers Limagrain UK Ltd admitted failing to ensure the health and safety at work of its employees following the incident at its premises in Woolpit in March last year.


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Fining the company �35,000 and ordering it to pay �7,631 costs Judge Peter Fenn said the accident had happened as a result of “a Heath Robinson approach” towards moving the trailer.

Ipswich Crown Court heard that a strap used to lift the grain trailer was designed to secure cargo to the back of a lorry and was labelled “Not for lifting”.

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Prior to refurbishment work being carried out on the vehicle the trailer was removed from the chassis before being turned on its long side and “propped up”.

The accident involving Mr Borley happened when the trailer toppled over as a strap was being attached to the trailer to lower it following the completion of the refurbishment work.

The court heard that Mr Borley was struck by the falling trailer as he came on to the scene to ask about another job.

Judge Fenn said the case was the result of carelessness rather than recklessness and deliberate risk taking.

The company had no previous convictions and a good health and safety record.

He said the company had admitted its liability and made interim payments to Mr Borley although the total amount was still to be agreed.

Ben Compton, for Limagrain UK Ltd, said the company took health and safety issues very seriously and regretted the incident involving Mr Borley, who was a long standing and highly valued member of staff.

He said the accident had happened during the carrying out of an isolated non-core task rather than during one of the company's core tasks.

He said since the incident the company had been reviewing all risk assessments and had given their 153 members of staff health and safety refresher courses.

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