Enva Scotland has been fined £264,000 for the death of an employee working on a shredder at its Burnbrae Road, Paisley facility in 2018.
The incident took place on 28 March 2018 at an industrial unit owned by recycling company William Tracey Group (see letsrecycle.com story), which was later acquired by a private equity firm and rebranded as Enva.
Details of the fine came in a statement from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) this morning (20 November). The HSE explained that 28-year-old Martin Kane was fatally injured whilst cleaning a shredding machine, and that the company pleaded guilty to breaching Sections 2(1) and 33(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act.
According to the HSE, Paisley Sheriff Court heard that two employees were trying to remove waste that was trapped between a heavy magnet and a hopper on the shredding machine. Mr Kane was struck by the magnet, which fell after he manually removed the locking pins that were keeping the magnet in place.
The HSE reported that Mr Kane sustained “extensive” head injuries and died as a result.
An HSE investigation found that the company had “failed to provide employees engaged in cleaning and using the shredder with adequate training, information and instruction on the deployment of the magnet fitted to the shredder”.
A spokesperson for Enva Scotland said: “Martin was a well-liked and highly regarded colleague and we deeply regret that this accident resulted in such tragic consequences”.
After the hearing, HSE inspector Russell Berry said: “Employers have a duty to provide safe systems of work for their employees and to provide adequate information, instruction and training on those systems of working.
“It should have been a relatively simple task to clean the shredding machine using the controls on the machine, as it was designed to be self-cleaning.
“On this occasion, the employer failed to ensure Mr Kane had received adequate information, instruction and training regarding the safe operation and methods of cleaning the machine. It led to Mr Kane adopting an unsafe method for moving the magnet whilst trying to clean the machine manually, resulting in this tragic but entirely preventable incident.”