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Super Waste Site Opened by Royal Oblivious to Tragedy

08 May 2015 | Updated 01 January 1970

Waste and recycling services company Veolia ES Staffordshire Ltd (part of Veoila UK group) have been prosecuted after a worker suffered life changing injuries when he fell more than 8 feet from height.

On 2 May 2014 the worker, who does not wish to be named, fell from the unprotected edge of a ‘grizzly conveyor’ at the firm’s site on Enterprise Drive whilst clearing items caught on the conveyor’s forks.

Veoila ES Staffordshire Ltd of London pleaded guilty at Stafford Magistrates court to breaching Regulation 6(3) of The Work at Height Regulations 2005 and Regulation 3(1) of The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and were fined a total of £16,600 and ordered to pay £1,773.15 in costs with a victim surcharge of £120.

Speaking after the hearing HSE Inspector Katherine Blunt said: “This incident was entirely preventable, clearing the conveyor in this way was a routine part of the job but no risk assessment had been carried out. If it had it would have been obvious edge protection was essential. The injured worker is still suffering from his injuries now and has only been able to return to work on limited duties.

”Falls from height are the most common cause of serious injury and fatalities in the workplace, it’s imperative that risk assessments are carried out and suitable control measures are put in place to eliminate or reduce the risks.”


Royal oblivious

A brand new energy recovery facility at the same site saw its official opening take place on Wednesday 14th May 2014 - carried out by HRH The Duke of Gloucester.  The Duke was oblivious to the accident just ten days before.


Eenergy recovery facility

The facility is designed so that all waste handling and processing is enclosed within the building, and high levels of sustainability and plant efficiency are attained. Exterior lighting will be designed to minimise light pollution, whilst maintaining site security.

The building has the benefit from having a ‘living roof’ which means roof sections are planted with species to help the building blend into the surrounding area and to increase biodiversity. The scheme also has the benefit from extensive landscaping, sustainable drainage and habitat creation.

Picture: A state of the art facility failed when it came to safety at height.

Article written by Brian Shillibeer | Published 08 May 2015


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