The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has prosecuted a Stockport-based laundry firm, after a 34-year-old employee sustained third-degree burns after falling through a mezzanine floor and landing on an industrial steam iron.
The unnamed father-of-one was injured in the incident at Vineshield Professional Services Ltd in November 2013.
An HSE investigation found the company had failed to monitor the condition of the floor – and had not ensured that it was of a suitable construction for the environment in which it was used.
Witnesses provided evidence to HSE that there were leaks in the roof, which dripped onto the wooden floor – and metal patches were found in several places where there were holes in the wood.
At Trafford Magistrates’ Court, Vineshield Professional Services Ltd – of Baxall Business Centre, Adswood Industrial Estate in Stockport – pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, as well as Regulation 12(1) of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992.
The company was fined £20,000, with £7,915.50 in costs.
After the hearing, HSE inspector Helen Jones said:
“Vineshield Professional Services failed to carry out checks to ensure the floor was safe to work on. This was of importance due to the heat and steam generated in the working environment.
“An industrial iron giving off steam was situated directly underneath the mezzanine floor.
“The injured worker was severely burnt and had to undergo very painful treatment in hospital.”
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