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Fri October 30 2020

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Construction worker loses leg in paving machine crush

26 Jul 10 A Somerset construction company has been fined £10,000 after a worker's foot was crushed under a paving machine, resulting in his lower leg being amputated.

A Somerset construction company has been fined £10,000 after a worker's foot was crushed under a paving machine, resulting in his lower leg being amputated.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted Radstock-based John Wainwright & Co for its role in the incident at Monkton Heathfield on 29 August 2008.

Taunton Magistrates Court heard that Alan Seviour, who worked for the company as a delivery driver, was carrying out some relief road work on the day of the incident. As he cleared material from the front of the surface paving machine, his foot became trapped and crushed between a speed bump and a bar at the front of the machine.

The damage to Seviour's right foot was so severe that he had to have his lower leg amputated. He still works for the company as a driver, but has to use a specially adapted van.

John Wainwright & Co pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) and Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. As well as the fine it was also ordered to pay £8,015 in costs.

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HSE inspector, Annette Walker said: "Although the surface paver is a slow-moving machine, it is not safe for anyone to work in front of it while it is in motion as it can be noisy, making communication difficult.

"Seviour suffered life-changing injuries because the machine was in motion and the driver had limited forward visibility because of the way the machine was designed. In fact the driver did not know Mr Seviour was trapped until he was told to reverse off him.

"Seviour has been able to return to work now that the company has provided him with a suitable vehicle. However, it all could have been avoided if John Wainwright & Co had put the right systems in place to ensure the safety of all people working with or near this machine."

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