Chorley-based car salvage business Douglas Valley Breakers has been prosecuted by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) after a member of staff suffered severe burns in what was deemed an avoidable accident.
Lee Roberts of Wigan was injured in July 2010 at the firm’s workshop on Blainscough Lane in Coppull after he was tasked with drilling a hole in a vehicle’s fuel tank in order to drain it.
Unfortunately, a build-up of flammable vapours in the pit beneath the vehicle where he was working and an errant spark caused the individual to be engulfed in a fireball. He has since been unable to return to work due to his injuries.
Leyland Magistrates’ Court saw Douglas Valley Breakers plead guilty to five breaches of health and safety legislation as a result of the accident, with the firm fined GBP 40,000 and ordered to pay prosecution costs of GBP 25,000.
HSE inspector David Myrtle concluded after the hearing: “[The company] failed to properly consider the risks its employees faced while removing fuel from vehicles, or to do anything about them.”
Posted by Trevor Baker
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