Camarthen Firm is Found Guilty of Health and Safety Breaches


The dangerous conditions were discovered during a routine inspection by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Inspectors on 20 May 2013, upon which 8 notices were given to immediately stop a number of work activities.
Workplace Safety

Dangerous Working Conditions

The firm, run by Mekatek Ltd were prosecuted by the HSE at Swansea Crown Court last week. They were fined £55,000 after they pleaded guilty to a breach of health and safety regulation , a breach of asbestos regulations and a breach of work equipment regulations.

Some dangerous points highlighted by the court included the use of a "man basket" on a fork lift truck, that allowed employees to use this to conduct work from a height. There was found to be no cage behind the basket to protect workers from the risk of becoming trapped in the mast of the truck.

There were no guards in place to protect workers from the risk of becoming caught in moving parts of a machinery granulator, two compactors, a shredder and a paint mixing drum. Electrical cables were also found to be running through liquid, giving rise to the risk of electrocution.

In addition, pipe lagging containing asbestos was found in poor condition, meaning workers at the site were exposed to the risk of asbestos contamination. Clare Owen a health inspector for the HSE, commented on the risks of exposure to asbestos following the hearing;

"20 tradespeople, on average, die from asbestos related diseases in Britain every week and it’s the highest single cause of work related deaths in the country."

She went on to state, "the conditions at the site were extremely poor and the dangers were quite clear. It’s very fortunate that no-one was killed or seriously injured there."

Philip Gower, a partner specialising in Personal Injury and Industrial Disease, highlights that only 1 in 10 tradesmen are aware that asbestos exposure can be fatal. "The effects can be devastating and increased awareness of the potential dangers in the work place is crucial."

Employers Obligation

Your employer is legally obliged to ensure your working environment is safe. Accidents at work can happen due to:
  • Defective equipment
  • The negligence of other employees
  • Unsafe working practices adopted by the employer
Accidents at work may happen in any environment. Regardless of your occupation you may find yourself in a situation where you are involved in an accident that was not your fault.

We have helped many clients obtain personal injury compensation due to unsafe working conditions. One of our clients injured himself on multiple occasions due to failures by his employer to implement a safe system of working. On this occasion he was awarded £28,242 in compensation for his injuries.

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