Ambergate haulage firm pays £50,000 after crushing incident

Derby Crown Court
Derby Crown Court

An Ambergate haulage company has been told to pay hefty fines after two workplace incidents in 2013 broke health and safety rules.

Lockwood Haulage Limited of Sawmills, Ambergate, were fined a total of £40,000 today, Thursday, November 19, in a sentencing hearing at Derby Crown Court.

Two employees suffered serious injuries on two separate incidents, one involving an untrained pallet truck operator whose feet were crushed, and the other who fell, and the second who fell, suffering a fractures skull.

The prosecution was taken by Amber Valley Borough Council who said the first accident involved an agency worker who on his first day was allowed to use a powered pallet truck without the company checking that he was trained to do so.

The council said: "The worker subsequently trapped his feet against a protective barrier for the wall of the building he was working in and the footplate of the truck he was driving, crushing both his feet and breaking his left ankle, that required extensive surgery. He was hospitalised for six weeks.

"The second accident involved an employee falling from a mezzanine floor and sustaining a fractured skull and other injuries. He was unable to work for several months."

Both workers sustained long-term injuries from which they are still recovering, added the council.

Councillor David Taylor, Portfolio Holder for Housing and Public Health, said: “The aim of the Health and Safety at Work Act is to make sure employees are safe at work. Lockwood Haulage failed to ensure that those working for them had been adequately trained to do their jobs safely.

“The Council promotes, and encourages high standards of health and safety at work and this prosecution demonstrates the Council’s focus on investigating serious accidents and when necessary prosecuting those who have failed to adequately protect their staff.”

At a previous hearing at Derby Magistrates Court the company had pleaded guilty to the two offences under the Health and Safety at Work Act.

In addition to the fine they were ordered to pay more than £13,000 in costs.