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Tree specialists fined £3,000 after worker’s back broken by dumper truck

An Essex-based tree specialist company has been fined £3,000 after a skip loading dumper truck overturned and broke an employee’s back.

Basildon Magistrates’ Court was told the 19-year-old man had been working at the rear of a house in Benfleet, Essex on 26 September 2014 when the incident occurred.

The 19-year-old employee had only been given a few minutes training on the use of the dumper truck.

He had no driving licence and was not wearing a safety belt when he overturned the vehicle, the court was told.

The man was airlifted to hospital where he was found to have broken his back.

He spent months in hospital and his injuries are life-changing. It is not known if he will ever be able to walk again.

Oak View Tree Specialists Limited, of Rayleigh, Essex, admitted to breaching Regulation 9(1) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 as it failed to ensure that its employees received adequate training for the purposes of health and safety.

The company was fined £3,000 with costs of £1,500.

Speaking after sentencing, HSE Inspector Keith Waller, said: “This was entirely an avoidable incident. The defendant failed to take reasonably practicable measures because they allowed their employee to operate a dangerous item of plant machinery with only the very minimum of training.

“It is not acceptable to put drivers into vehicles that they have not previously operated, or without the necessary training by a qualified and competent instructor.”

If you have suffered an injury in an accident in the workplace that was not your fault then you could be entitled to compensation.

Contact Lloyd Green Solicitors on 0800 015 5500 for more information.