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Mercian Recycling fined after worker paralysed

By 22/12/2017News

A waste and recycling company in Birmingham has been fined more than £80,000 after a 24-year-old worker was paralysed after becoming trapped in machinery.

A statement released by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) explained how Birmingham Magistrates’ Court heard that the Mercian Recycling Limited employee fell approximately four metres to the floor when the machine was switched back on with him inside.

The employee was said to be undertaking routine maintenance work at the time.


An investigation by the HSE into the incident, which occurred on 22 December 2016, found that the company had insufficient controls in place for the management of these risks at their premises.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Paul Cooper said: “This is a case where the company failed to have in place any controls whatsoever for ensuring routine maintenance operations were carried out without risks to safety.

“It reinforces to companies in the waste industry the need to identify risks to their employees and others and to put the necessary control measures in place.”

Mercian Recycling is based in the Kings Norton, Birmingham.

“The waste industry is a known high-risk industry and for this reason HSE is currently targeting the sector with an inspection initiative to ensure effective management and control of risk.”

The company pleaded guilty to breaching Sections 2 (1) and 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and has been fined £80,000 and ordered to pay costs of £2,498.34.

According to HSE, Mercian Recycling Limited is based on Ebury Road. It is thought to share premises with Mercian Skip Hire, also of Ebury Road. The skip hire website offers a recycling service.

On Companies House, the UK’s registrar of companies, Mercian Recycling’s directors are listed as Margaret and James Fox.

Mercian Recycling has declined a request to comment.

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Source: Waste Managment