HSE prosecutes driver for striking another employee with his truck

A fork-lift truck driver has been prosecuted by the HSE for causing serious injuries to a colleague.

Gerald Wyatt was fined £1,750 after striking an employee with his truck, causing a fractured pelvis, cuts and bruises. The accident happened onsite at Eardisley Sawmills, Herefordshire, in January 2007.

Worcester Crown Court heard that Wyatt was driving a rough terrain fork-lift truck loaded with a stack of 12 modular sheds. The load significantly obscured his vision, causing the accident to occur.

The court found that Wyatt’s employer had not been negligent in its health and safety training. The company, which was unnamed, had an inhouse fork lift truck trainer and Wyatt had received regular refresher training.

Anne Robinson, HSE investigating inspector, said: “In this case his forward visibility was significantly obscured by the load and he could not see his colleague. The injuries inflicted could have been significantly worse, or even fatal. Operators of lift trucks must ensure that they operate them in accordance with the training they have been given to prevent such tragedies.”