£750k fine for vehicle supplier after burst tyre claims worker's eye

An Essex agricultural and grounds care machinery supplier has been fined £750,000 after a worker was blinded in one eye by an exploding tyre.

Image: HW
Image: HW

The tyre technician was employed by Ernest Doe & Sons of Ulting near Maldon, which describes itself as the UK's largest agricultural, construction and groundcare dealer.

While re-inflating tyres of a customer's four-wheel-drive agricultural vehicle last December, one tyre exploded, blowing him across the workshop and causing severe injuries to his head and face.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the company failed to provide adequate instruction, training and supervision to its tyre technicians, and failed to identify and remedy unsafe working practices that had become the norm at its tyre depot.

Ernest Doe & Sons was fined £750,000, and ordered to pay HSE's full prosecution costs of £9,155, after pleading guilty to an offence under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

HSE principal inspector Norman Macritchie said: "While all tyre technicians require suitable training, those inflating the large, higher-pressure tyres fitted to many agricultural, commercial, and construction vehicles need to implement key additional precautions, such as using a suitable inflation cage or bag."


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