Council fined £100,000 for white finger outbreak

Grant Prior 4 months ago
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Dacorum Borough Council has been fined for exposing seven grounds maintenance workers to Hand Arm Vibration caused by excessive use of power tools.

Luton Magistrates’ Court heard how the council reported seven cases of HAVS between May 2015 and June 2016.

The affected employees were all part of its grounds maintenance and street care team, looking after the public spaces in Hertfordshire.

An HSE investigation found that the council had neither adequately planned its working methods nor trained or informed employees on the risks to their health.

Dacorum Borough Council also did not limit the duration or magnitude of exposure to vibration and failed to put in place suitable health surveillance to identify problems at an early stage.

Dacorum Borough Council pleaded guilty to safety breaches and was fined £100,000 and ordered to pay costs of £28,672.62.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Rubeena Surnam said “This was a case of the council failing to identify the risk from hand arm vibration which is a recognised health risk with potentially disabling consequences.

“Unless vibration is identified and properly assessed, an employer won’t know the level of risk and whether action is needed to protect workers.”

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