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Plastics company fined for failing to implement health and safety measures

todayMay 20, 2021

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A Birmingham plastics wholesaler was fined £40,000 at Birmingham Magistrates Court today (19 May 2021), after pleading guilty to breaching health and safety regulations at its warehouse.

The company pleaded guilty to four offences under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 for failing to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of employees at work. These relate to not preventing risks of falling from a loading bay, ladder and walkway, and failing to appoint a competent person to manage health and safety issues at the warehouse.

Plastic and Hardware Limited were also ordered to pay costs of £7,248 and a victim surcharge of £170 at today’s sentencing.

Councillor Cllr Philip Davis, Chair of the city council’s Licensing and Public Protection Committee, said: “This case highlights the need for health and safety issues in the workplace to be taken seriously, from the boardroom to the shop floor. Falling from height is a common cause of serious or fatal injuries.”

During an inspection on 4 February 2019, a council health and safety inspector issued four improvement notices. These required the company to install measures to prevent anyone falling from two high-level storage platforms, a suitable loading bay gate and lighting in part of the warehouse.

The inspector returned to the premises on multiple occasions between 1 April and 10 September 2019 to establish whether the company had complied with the notices issued. Of particular note was an improvement notice given during a visit on 12 July 2019 instructing the company to appoint ‘a competent person’ to be responsible for health and safety issues. The court heard that the company had failed to comply with this improvement notice and had not appointed a competent person.

Cllr Davis added: “Our officers will continue to take action where minimum standards of health and safety are not met or being flouted.”

 

Written by: David Watkins

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