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Sat June 15 2024

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Site manager fined for drill injury

9 Sep 11 A worker was left with permanent damage to his arm after being told by his site manager to use a heavy-duty core drill by hand on a construction site in Huddersfield.

The core drill that the worker was asked to operate by hand
The core drill that the worker was asked to operate by hand

The 32-year-old worker, from Rochdale, Lancashire, was instructed by site manager Matthew Saville to remove a 34kg, 1m-high diamond core drill from its stand and hand-hold it to tackle a job. The drill's instructions specifically prohibited hand-held use.

As it was in use, the rotating core of the drill snagged on the blockwork and the body of the drill, which was being held, began to rotate and the man was spun round dangerously. He suffered a double compound fracture to his right arm and cuts to his head. He was in hospital for 12 days, had three operations on his arm and now has plates inserted permanently.

After an investigation, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) brought a prosecution against Matthew Saville of Bridgefield Crescent, Oldham, for failing in his responsibilities to properly manage the construction site under his control.

Huddersfield Magistrates' Court heard that the injured man was part of a construction team working at the former Somerfield store site in Milnsbridge, when the incident happened in August 2009. Mr Saville, who pleaded guilty to breaching the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007, was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay £2,388 in costs.

HSE Inspector Martin Hutton said after the hearing: "Mr Saville allowed his eagerness to get a job done to take priority over the safety of a worker. He failed to pause for a short time to consider the potential risks associated with using the drill in this way. Ultimately, this has led to a serious injury.”

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