Health and safety: news in brief

Unison wins compensation for electrocuted worker

Health workers’ union Unison has won compensation for an employee who was blinded and badly burned after being electrocuted by work equipment. Anthony Briars, a worker with Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council, lost his sight for several days and also developed post-traumatic stress disorder after the incident in September 2006. Manchester Crown Court awarded Briars £6,000.

HSE asbestos warning

The Health and Safety Executive has warned firms to properly assess risks when working with asbestos and ideally ensure only licensed contractors are used. It follows the prosecution of Westpoint Schoolcare for failing to properly assess whether asbestos was present before starting refurbishment work at a Manchester school. It was fined £1,000.

Container company fined for death of lorry driver

A container company has been fined £150,000 after a lorry driver was killed when his load of 25 tonnes of steel punched through his cab. Lawrence Allen was crushed when the metal shifted on the truck at Seaforth Docks in Bootle, Merseyside in September 2006. Coastal Container Line, a subsidiary of the Mersey Docks and Harbour Company, admitted breaching health and safety laws.

Firm fined £12k for injury

A firm has been fined £12,000 after a 16-year-old worker’s hand was dragged into a printing machine while he was cleaning it. East Lancashire Box Company pleaded guilty to three breaches of health and safety legislation over the incident. The worker’s finger was broken and he suffered crush injuries to two others.

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