The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has prosecuted a property maintenance firm from Oldham, Manchester, after an employee suffered serious injuries whilst at work. The company has been fined more than £5,000 as a result.
The HSE investigated City Response Ltd after employee Neil Kelly, 52, suffered acid burns after visiting a house in Heywood in December 2009. Mr Kelly was attempting to unblock a sink at the house when the accident occurred.
He was using concentrated sulphuric acid, which reacted with the water in the sink and caused an eruption. Acid reportedly shot up into the air and rained down on Mr Kelly, who suffered severe burns to his face, neck and arm as a result. He was off work for more than two months because of his injuries.
At Trafford Magistrates Court recently, City Response Ltd bosses admitted breaching part of the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (2002) by failing to properly train or supervise Mr Kelly in using chemicals to unblock sinks. The company also failed to provide their employee with the right protective clothing.
City Response Ltd was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay court costs of £2,965, which the company will presumable pay with its employers’ liability insurance. This type of professional insurance is mandatory for any company which has employees.