Bradford Crown Court heard how on 13 February 2016 the employee was injured while working on the production line of Nestlé’s Albion Mills site in Halifax.
The technical operator placed his right hand close to a gap in the machine housing when an emery cloth held in his right hand was dragged into the machine taking his arm with it.
Unable to reach any of the emergency stop buttons located around the machine from the position in which he was trapped, the employee had to be released from the machine by paramedics. He suffered a double compound fracture to his arm, which required surgery.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found Nestlé had failed to prevent access to dangerous moving parts of the machine – namely an ‘in-running nip’. There was a gap large enough to allow access at a belt conveyor entry on the After Eight line.
Nestlé UK Ltd of City Place Gatwick pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 11 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998.It was fined £640,000 and ordered to pay £26,234 in costs.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Jacqueline Ferguson said: “The risks inherent in failures to properly guard dangerous parts of machinery are well known in industry and to Nestlé.
“Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”
Meanwhile, last month, Müller UK & Ireland was ordered to pay more than £66k for health and safety failings after an agency worker suffered severe injuries when their fingers were caught in machinery at its Minsterley site in Shropshire.