Worker’s head and upper body horrifically crushed in poorly guarded machine

A Northampton-based engineering firm has been fined after an operator was crushed while making moulds for a casting machine.

The RSM Castings employee, who has asked to remain anonymous, sustained extensive injuries on 11 April 2018, including a broken neck, back fractures, broken ribs, a fractured shoulder blade, a ruptured spleen and torn liver, a punctured lung, facial fractures and loss of teeth. He has not yet been able to return to work due the severity of his injuries. 

Northampton Magistrates’ Court was told that the worker leant into the machine to light the burners when the pattern plate closed on his head and upper body. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found there was inadequate safeguarding on the piece of equipment to prevent access between the closing pattern parts.   

RSM Castings pleaded guilty to breaching s 11 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations. It was been fined £32,000 and ordered to pay costs of £1,740. 

HSE inspector Neil Ward said: “This case highlights the importance of foundries checking guarding on their machines and not to be complacent about machinery safety. In this case RSM failed to ensure that the machine was guarded to the correct standard and it could have easily resulted in a fatal injury.” 

IOSH Magazine