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£5000 fine after truck falls on worker

  • 04 February 2014
  • By Roger Brown

Vehicle recovery firm ABR Rescue has been fined £5,000 after a mechanic suffered a serious back injury when a seven-tonne truck fell off its jack and trapped him underneath.

In a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecution, Hull Magistrates’ Court was told how the 22-year-old was fitting a brake chamber to the HGV at ABR Rescue’s workshop in Grindell Street, Hull, in June 2012.

Its rear nearside wheels had been taken off and the vehicle was being supported by a single hydraulic jack – which itself was standing on a block of wood.

Another company employee was working in the lorry’s cab at the same time. When he started the engine the HGV rolled off or fell from the jack, trapping the mechanic underneath.

The man fractured two vertebrae in the incident and was unable to return to work for three months. An HSE investigation found that the firm had badly neglected the safety of its employees.

It had failed to provide safe working methods and had not addressed the risks of harm associated with working underneath vehicles.

The organisation said the HGV should have been supported using axle stands, and the remaining wheels should have been chocked to prevent it from rolling.

ABR Rescue was also ordered to pay £3,760 after admitting breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

After the case, HSE Inspector Dr Nicholas Tosney, said: “This young mechanic was working underneath an inadequately supported and unchecked HGV, while another employee was working in the cab.

“Jacks are for lifting, not support, and in these circumstances it was entirely foreseeable that when the engine was started the vehicle would fall.”


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