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A company has been ordered to pay £81,668 after a young agency worker was injured when her hair and scarf became entangled in machinery at a Mainetti factory. 25-year old Kelly Nield was sorting clothes hangers on a conveyor belt when the “horrific” accident happened in April 2009.
She suffered throat injuries, hair loss and a fractured finger, spending three months in hospital after the incident which took place in Deeside Industrial Park. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted the company, a coat hanger maker, for serious safety failings at Mold Crown Court.
The firm pleaded guilty to breaching four health and safety regulations. Prosecutors said that in its risk assessment the company failed to identify the dangers of entanglement when working at conveyors.
On Thursday, Mainetti was ordered to pay a total of £60,000 with additional costs of £21,668.
After the hearing, HSE inspector David Wynne said Ms Nield had sustained life-changing injuries which could have been avoided if the right safeguarding measures had been taken by the company.
“There are well-known risks associated with working with conveyor belts. It is vital, therefore, that the risks are fully assessed and guarding provided to prevent access to moving parts. Where appropriate, emergency stop controls should be installed in readily accessible places,” said Mr Wynne.
“Employers must also ensure that workers are properly monitored, supervised and trained when working with this sort of equipment.”