The HSE has yet again prosecuted an erring company which has shown negligent attitude towards worker safety causing the death of a maintenance worker. The company was taken to task for failing to provide safe equipment for repair work which led to a tragic accident in which the man was killed.
The company in question is an airport services company named Aviance UK Ltd. HSE prosecuted Aviance UK Ltd, for breaching Section 2 of Health and Safety at Work act of 1974 at the City of London Magistrates’ Court. Aviance pleaded guilty to the charges and the Central Criminal Court fined the company £90,000, apart from asking them to pay £18,800 as costs. The HSE has cited this case as an example and warned other such erring companies.
The incident happened on 25th March 2008 during the repairing of a vehicle called baggage tug which is very commonly used in airports to pull baggage trolleys. To carry out the repair job the vehicle was lifted nearly sixty centimetres up in the air with the help of a trolley jack. The maintenance worker Mohammad Taj was a specialist at vehicle maintenance and was doing his job during which he was under the vehicle. The trolley jack moved backwards dropping the baggage tug on Taj killing him instantly due to severe head injuries.
The HSE investigation revealed that the accident could have been avoided had Aviance UK Ltd. provided an axle stand or any other kind of support. It is this type of negligence that HSE aims to prevent and it has issued a warning to other companies to ensure that such accidents do not occur at the workplace.