SCA fined over worker crushed by paper reel

Paper manufacturer SCA has been fined 120,000 after an employee at one of its UK sites was crushed by a two-tonne paper reel in an incident that left him paralysed from the waist down.

Christopher Shaw was working as an assistant winder at SCA’s Oakenholt site in Wales, which produces paper for its Hygiene Products subsidiary, when the incident occurred on 29 July 2007.

Shaw slipped when using his body weight to slow down a moving reel of around 2m diameter, which then rolled on to him causing the injuries that left him paralysed.

At Mold Crown Court, SCA pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. It was fined £120,000 and ordered to pay full costs of £18,514.

Colin Platt, UK supply chain director at SCA, said: "We deeply regret the injuries caused and the impact of the incident on Christopher, his family, friends and colleagues."

HSE inspector Will Gretton added: "Employees using their body weight to slow down such large and potentially dangerous items as paper reels clearly isn’t a safe way of working.

"There were clear risks that weren’t properly managed by the firm, which resulted in Mr Shaw’s horrific injuries."

He said the company has now put in place more effective measures to protect the health and safety of its employees.