New Earth Solutions fined 200K after worker suffers burns

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has announced it has fined a waste management company £200,000 and ordered it to pay £12,466.60 in costs, after a worker suffered burns to his face and body. 

The case was heard at Lincoln magistrates court on 10 May 2024. 

The court heard the worker was contracted by New Earth Solutions (West), which were trading as Mid UK Recycling, to work at its recycling plant located at the Copper Hill industrial estate in Lincolnshire. 


According to the HSE, the man was moving heavy duty electrical cables with a metal crowbar. The bar then came into contract with a live conductor which caused an electrical explosion at the industrial estate in an incident that took place on 14 July 2021. 

The explosion caused the man to fall from the platform he was stood on and due to the fall, he sustained a broken left arm, fractured ribs and a dislocated kneecap. 

An investigation into the incident by the HSE had revealed that the task was not part of the injured workers normal workload and he had not received any training. Additionally, the HSE reported that New Earth Solutions had not properly risk-assessed the task and electrical cables were not isolated before work began. 

It also reported that the level of supervision provided was “not sufficient” and safety devices on the electrical supply had been set inappropriately. The HSE said the company had “prioritised continuity of supply over safety of the electrical circuit”. 


HSE inspector, Tim Nicholson, said: “This incident could so easily have been avoided by properly planning the task, ensuring that all workers involved were suitably competent and making sure that electrical conductors were isolated before the work began. 

“Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.” 

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