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Roofing company pays settlement after worker’s injury

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A company in the metal roofing trade has been fined after inadequate machine safety measures caused a serious wrist injury. Working at Euro Clad Ltd’s Wentloog factory, 46 year old Darren Gillard suffered the injury whilst operating a wooden block positioning machine.

The machine was designed to place the blocks underneath roof panels as a part of the production line, when a jamming of the blocks occurred. The employee attempted to rectify the problem by manually removing the jammed bearers. The machine was in automatic mode, and once the bearers were freed from the machinery, it began operating again, and crushed Mr Gillard’s hand and wrist, with it caught in-between the bearer and the base frame.

After the incident, Mr Gillard needed three operations at hospital, with skin grafts and metal plates needed to help reconstruct the crushed wrist. The severity of the injury left the employee out of work for four months.

Prosecution conducted by the HSE at Cardiff Crown Court saw that Mr Gillard was easily able to access the production line through a high fence that surrounded it. A gate that allowed access to the line, but was supposed to be locked, had been found to be tampered with and left open. It was found that many workers would use this open gate to reach the line to fix the often occurring jams, without isolating the machine or shutting it down correctly.

The prosecution was conducted on the grounds of the failure to take appropriate measures and protocol to stop employees accessing dangerous areas on the line, and to ensure employees were notified on the correct procedures to fix machines.