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Tyre maker fined after worker is trapped and killed in industrial oven

Posted in: Faulty Work Equipment Workplace Injuries Wrongful & Accidental Death 

Tyre-making company Pirelli has been fined £150,000 after one of its employees died in an industrial oven. 48-year-old George Falder, from Carlisle, was found dead in the machine, (which reaches temperatures of 150C) by one of his colleagues. The Health and Safety Executive described it as a “tragic death”.

Pirelli admitted to health and safety failings that caused the death in the Carlisle Crown Court. The company was forced to pay £46,700 in costs. The HSE brought further criminal proceedings against the company after an investigation found that there was no system for checking the autoclave, in which the tyres are heated, before it is switched on.

‘Pirelli failed to identify the risk’

It was heard in court that only one hour after Mr Falder’s was last spotted on CCTV, a colleague accidently closed him in the autoclave and began the operating process. His body was later discovered inside.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector, Michael Griffiths, said: “Pirelli failed to identify the risk posed by workers entering the autoclave.” Pirelli has made multiple changes to the autoclave operation at its site on Dalston Road since the incident.

The death was recorded in 2013 as an ‘accidental death’.

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