HSE Fines Goodyear Dunlop After Employee Fractures Skull
Goodyear Dunlop representatives were in court on 1 November after a teenage employee fractured his skull whilst maintaining machinery at the firm’s Wolverhampton compounding and retread manufacturing factility. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reports that it prosecuted Goodyear Dunlop Tyres UK Ltd after one of its maintenance team, Karl Illidge, struck his head at the firm's Stafford Road, Bushbury, Wolverhampton site. In July Goodyear Dunlop announced that it been awarded Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series 18001 certification, following an external audited by BSI.
Wolverhampton Magistrates heard that on 11 September 2009, Illidge, a 17 year old apprentice, was working with two other mechanical maintenance engineers to repair a tyre press when the internal bladder of the press re-energised and burst. This blew the lid off the press with great force and noise, causing Mr Illidge to move very quickly out of the way and, in doing so, he struck his head on nearby equipment.
According to an official statement released by the HSE, the firm, whose UK head office is in Erdington, Birmingham, was fined £18,250 and ordered to pay £4,807 costs after contravening Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.
HSE inspector Amarjit Kalay said: “This incident was entirely preventable had there been a safe system in place to ensure that services to the press had been isolated prior to the start of the maintenance work. It is also clear that the maintenance team were insufficiently trained to carry out the necessary diagnostic work on this piece of machinery.”