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£115000 fine after hand amputated by a machine 

hand amputated playford packaging photo

Mr Christopher Wright, a 59-year-old engineer, worked under Playford packaging at their factory on 10 February 2021. The factory location is at Wrexham Industrial Estate in Wrexham. 

How did the hand amputation accident happen? 

The operator of a Large case-making machine had previously noticed that one of the conveyor belts had formed a loop needing the service of an engineer to fix it. 

So Mr Christopher wright was asked to look into the machine since it had a problem. 

Mr Christopher, the Playford packaging principal engineer, and a colleague went inside the fixed perimeter guard of the machine and closed its interlock Gate. The Closing of the interlock guard will necessitate the starting of the machine.

While at the Machine, Mr Christopher had climbed within it to reset the conveyor belt and then remained in that place when he told them to switch on the machine. 

In seconds of starting the machine, Mr Christopher felt a fugging on his arm. The sleeve became caught in the exposed chain drive, and it pulled his hand in the chain mechanism amputating his left hand at the wrist. He was rushed to the Royal Derby hospital Pulvertaft hand centre after an 11-hour operation. 

The prosecution 

After the investigation, the HSE health and safety executive found that the company risk assessment was insufficient as it had not considered the risk created during the machine use. Also, there was no safe system of work in place. 

On 14 September at Llandudno magistrate court, Riftward limited trading as Playford packaging pleaded guilty to breaching section 2(1) of the health and safety at work act. The company was fined £115000 and ordered to pay a cost of £5308.

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