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Fine for Mil Tu Fit Engineering Ltd

On 30 August 2011, while operating a Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC) lathe, Ian Spicer 34, from Hartcliffe, Bristol, suffered severe head and chest injury. A rotating bar belonging to the lathe struck him hard.

Bristol Magistrates Court heard on 11 June 2012 that the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigated and found that the company of Mil Tu Fit Engineering, Mr. Spicer’s employers, failed to guard dangerous parts of machinery as per regulations, resulting in an unnecessary accident for their employee.

The company had two CNC lathes on their site. One, for short part machining and the other, with a bar feed attachment designed for machining longer parts. As the longer part lathe was already in use, Mr Spicer was instructed to use the other lathe without a bar feed attachment, to work on metal bars of about 2.5 metres long.

The court heard further that Mr. Spicer was advised to place a barrier made of empty drums at the machine end for fencing off the bar, as protection. The company used this method on past occasions.

The instability of the machine as it spun at high speed, caused it to bend under the weight, striking Mr. Spicer and rendering him crashing to the ground unconscious.

The accident caused Mr. Spicer to suffer a compressed skull fracture, concaving it, with fragments landing on his brain. He further suffered chest gashes, a dislodged breastplate, broken wrist and other smaller wounds.

Nine months after the incident, Mr Spicer still suffers headaches and other bodily pains, as well as dizziness. He is back at work on a part-time basis, but not operating lathes, and has an uncertain future.

For breaching safety regulations, Mil Tu Fit Engineering Ltd of 246 Broomhill Road, Brislington, Bristol, fined an amount of £10,000, and to pay costs of £3,632.