Worker loses arm in machine

January 6, 2010 by  

Last year a worker at the now closed International Paper plant, at Inverurie in Aberdeenshire Scotland, lost an arm after a gruesome accident at work. The incident was likened to a nineteenth century ‘Dickensian-style’ event. Despite legislation which was introduced well over a hundred years ago International Paper failed to provide an adequate safety barrier on the machine.

The incident happened after a paper break in the machine. The unfortunate worker was tail feeding after the break. Whilst attempting to throw a sheet of paper into the machine it became entangled around his arm. The worker was dragged into the machine, resulting in the terrible consequences.

An action was brought about by the Health and Safety Executive and International Paper pleaded guilty to breaching section 2 of The Health and Safety at work act 1974. Aberdeen Sheriffs Court imposed a fine of £6,000 on the company.

It is surprising that this old style industrial accident, more commonly associated with the formative days of the industrial revolution, than now, could happen at all. HSE inspector John Radcliffe said:

“This was a very serious incident and a Dickensian-style event considering the age of the legislation in place to protect workers. Had a colleague of the injured worker not acted as quickly as he did in stopping the machine, there could have been fatal consequences as his whole body could have been pulled into the machine.”

These events can happen. Printing companies in Aberdeen may be extra vigilant in 2010 in reviewing their Health and Safety procedures following such an incident.