Bakery firm told to pay +£7k for trapped hand

By Michael Stones contact

- Last updated on GMT

Thomas of York was ordered to pay over £7,000 for safety failings
Thomas of York was ordered to pay over £7,000 for safety failings

Related tags: Baking, Health and safety executive

A bakery firm has been ordered to pay more than £7,000, after a worker’s hand was trapped by a pastry lid maker.

The worker – who asked to remain anonymous – was operating the machine at Thomas of York Ltd in Helmsley, York in February 2015 when the accident happened.

During a prosecution for safety failings brought by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) it was revealed the pastry lid maker had been modified to improve its operation, including removing parts of the guarding system.

‘Partial de-gloving of his hand’

The worker suffered what the HSE described as a “partial de-gloving of his hand”,​ after it was pulled into the lid maker.

While the modification had been removed because it was ineffective before the accident, the guards were not replaced, a HSE probe discovered.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Julian Franklin said: “Modifying machines should always involve a reassessment of the safety of that machine.

‘Guard checking routines’

“Guard checking routines should be periodically audited to ensure they remain effective.”

Thomas of York Ltd in Helmsley, York pleaded guilty to breaching the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations, regulations 11 and 14, and was fined £6,500 with £691.45 costs at Northallerton Magistrates’ Court.

The firm's general manager Simon Thomas told“Both the family and directors of Thomas the Baker deeply regret the unfortunate accident that led to the production manager injuring his hand. He has since made an excellent recovery.

“During 35 years of trading, this is the first time that a member of staff has sustained a serious injury of this nature at work. Full cooperation was given to the Health and Safety Executive during their investigations and action has been taken to safeguard against similar incidents in the future.” 

Meanwhile, Thomas of York was established 30 years ago to bake Chorley cakes. The firm has grown to operate a craft bakery, more than 30 shops, three cafes and a butchers and delicatessen business.

The firm produces bread and rolls, pies and pastries, morning goods, confectionery, cream cakes and sandwiches.

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