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Equipment firm fined after worker injury

A Buckinghamshire waste equipment maintenance firm has been fined after a worker suffered serious head injuries when a mobile elevating work platform (MEWP) overturned.

In January last year, Geoffrey Hatton fractured his skull and two ribs when dismantling a compactor at Cole Mechanical Services’ site in Wilmslow, Cheshire. He spent two months in hospital.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found serious safety failings by the company.

The HSE said the MEWP was being used outside when it was suitable for internal work only, and employees were not trained in how to use the platform or how to safely erect tower scaffolding.

It also said, at the time of the incident, that another worker was on a fragile roof with no protection to prevent falls.

The company was fined £30,000 and ordered to pay costs of £8,995 after it pleaded guilty to a breach of Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974.

Solicitors for Cole Mechanical Services said Hatton returned to work in January this year, where he remains in employment with the full support of the company.

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