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£300 fine for safety breaches

 

A company has been fined almost £300,000 for safety breaches which led to the death of one of its employees.

Nylacast Limited, of Thurmaston Boulevard, Leicester was fined £293,000 after 52-year-old Tarsem Singh, of Oadby, died from a heart attack in hospital the day after sustaining injuries while removing a plastic rod from a casting machine.

The company, which manufactures plastics products for the construction and offshore industries, was also ordered to pay more than £10,000 in costs.

District Judge Tim Daber, handing down his sentence at Northampton Magistrates Court today after the company pleaded guilty to two breaches of health and safety regulations at an earlier hearing in Leicester said it "was an accident waiting to happen”.

Mr Singh’s family, who were in court to hear today’s judgement said no amount of fine or compensation could ever replace the loss of a dearly loved father and husband.

Leicester Magistrates Court heard in July that Mr Singh, of Oadby, an experienced operator on the bespoke machine was in the process of removing a cast plastic rod from a casting machine.   

The court was told the rod was secured in the machine by a pressurised piston, which should have been de-pressurised before the rod was removed.

As Mr Singh went to remove the rod from the machine, the metal retaining end cap and plastic rod were forcibly ejected, hitting Mr Singh in the chest at an estimated speed of 81mph, with a force of up to eight tonnes.

He died of a heart attack the following day in hospital due to his injuries, caused by the “blunt force impact” which cracked Mr Singh’s breast bone and jaw, knocking out several teeth.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the incident on April 15, 2016,, found that the company failed to undertake a suitable and sufficient assessment of the long length rod machine in order to ensure that all foreseeable hazards had been identified.

Nylacast, which employs 530 people around the world, 125 of them on a round the clock operation at the Thurmaston Boulevard site, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 3 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and Regulation 12 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998.

Sentencing, District Judge Daber said:“There was no engineering measure which prevented the ejection of the end cap before pressure in the mould had been released.

“The failings in this case were not an isolated incident as the risk existed each time the machine was used. In this court’s judgement, this was an accident waiting to happen.”

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