The Irish Injuries Board recently reported that activities involving the use of machinery in the workplace are accounting for a very high number of serious personal injuries.
In 2013 alone, it was noted that 10% of all workplace claims were attributed to incidents involving the use of machinery. These included crush injuries, loss of digits, fractures and sadly one fatality. The total amount of compensation as a result was a staggering Euro 3.1million over the twelve month period noting an average payout of Euro 39,500.00 per claim*.
Reflecting upon this data, it is thus critical that all workplaces and all work activities are adequately risk assessed and all relevant SOP’s in place. Another critical element here is the requirement for all staff to receive task and machine specific training before commencing work. Supervision here is also a very important part of the process.
For more information:
* Health and Safety Review July / August 2014, pg.2
“Steel cutters awarded for a sum of Euro 1,325,000.00 in the High Court”
(July 2014) – The steel worker in question sustained serious brain, head and facial injuries as a result of his head becoming trapped in the mechanisms of a descending cherry picker. During the hearing, the defence team also noted the fact that overall management on the site left a lot to be desired……
“Meat factory worker hit by hook”
(July 2014) –The case of a meat factory worker seriously injured when a metal hook used to transport meat carcases along a roof rail system came loose was heard in the High Court recently. The employee alleged that his employer failed in their duty to provide a safe place of work and indeed the provision of a safety helmet.
The case was settled out of court with no final figures published.
The above case studies involve to some extent the use of workplace equipment and machinery. Both cases involved serious injury as a result of contact with said workplace articles. As a result, safe working zones, safe operating procedures, preventative maintenance and risk assessments must, at a minimum be in place and adhered to.
For more information:
Health and Safety Review Sept 2014, pg.18