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Firm pays over £3k for worker injury

A firm has been ordered to pay £3,814 after a worker suffered serious burns when he was hit by an electrical charge during work on a waste site in September 2008.

Andrew Perry was injured when using a control lever to move the extending arm of his truck to tip waste materials, when it touched a set of 33,000 volt overhead electric cables.

The electricity surged through the metal structure of the vehicle and through Mr Perry’s body, throwing him from the vehicle, leaving him with burns to his arm and feet.

John Rowland Fallows, owner of the site and who trades as Fallows Recycling Services, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 14 of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 at Newcastle-under-Lyme Magistrates Court today.

He was fined £1,600 and ordered to pay £2,214 in costs.

HSE inspector Lynne Boulton said: “Mr Perry was very lucky not to have lost his life. Around 60 per cent of electrical fatalities at work are caused by inadvertent contact with overhead power lines.

“It’s important to remember that machinery and equipment do not need to touch power lines for electricity to be transmitted because it can arc or jump across gaps.”