Caerphilly, Wales - Foam manufacturer Recticel's UK operation has been fined after a lorry driver's back was broken when a pile of insulating board fell on him at the firm's premises in Stoke on Trent, according to a 5 Nov statement from the UK's Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
Newcastle-under-Lyme magistrates heard that on 21 Oct 2009 Colin Ball, a 52-year-old lorry driver from Codsall near Wolverhampton, was delivering insulation board to the company's warehouse when a separate stack toppled onto him and knocked him back into his trailer.
Ball suffered multiple spinal fractures and a serious head injury and is likely to need long term rehabilitation for his injuries, said the HSE.
Recticel Ltd of Alfreton in Derbyshire pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Etc Act 1974. The incident occurred at the company's premises at Enterprise Way, Whittle Road, Meir Park, Stoke on Trent.
Recticel is a multinational a group specialising in manufacture and converting of polyurethane foam, and has over one hundred manufacturing sites in 20 countries, employing over 11 000 people worldwide.
Recticel was fined £6238 ($10 000) and ordered to pay £11 762 costs.
HSE inspector Lyn Mizen commented: "Employers have just as great a duty of care to visiting employees as they do to their own. Every year in the delivery and haulage industry there are a number of workplace fatalities and serious injuries as a result of falling objects.
"This incident serves to highlight the need for companies to ensure that their stacking arrangements are properly planned, managed and controlled. This incident could easily have been prevented had the company implemented a suitable and sufficient safe system of work to effectively manage the risks posed by stacked materials in their warehouse."