May 2, 2017

2 Min Read
Food Company Fined $2.5M After Worker Crushed to Death
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UK prepared vegetables and salads company Hitchen Foods was ordered to pay fines of £2 million, or about $2.58 million USD, by the Manchester Crown Court on April 28 for its role the 2015 death of 29-year-old worker who was crushed by falling plastic bales, the UK’s occupational safety agency, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) announced by press release.

Jacek Adamowicz was cleaning a storage yard on Feb. 4, 2015 when plastic bales weighing 703 kg fell and trapped him on the ground. The Daily Mail reported in January 2016 that the worker died from being starved of oxygen due to a chest injury.

An investigation by the HSE revealed that the company’s owner, Wigan-based Bakkavor Foods Limited, failed to provide formal training for stacking bales, lacked monitoring in the bale area, and failed to implement properly planned safe systems of work for workers exposed to danger during the stacking of bales.

“Bakkavor Foods Limited fell short of the required standard expected. Not only should proper planning have been carried out in relation to the storage and stacking of waste bales, but also a system of work subsequently put in place to mitigate those risks,” HSE Inspector Ian Betley said in a statement. “The company failed on both of these counts with devastating consequences.”

The food company pled guilty to violation of Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work at 1974, the HSE said. The firm was also ordered to pay £32,595.10 in costs.

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