Landowners in Northumberland have been sentenced after one of their employees suffered leg injuries while working on their farm.
The worker at the centre of the case, along with another employee, were constructing cattle troughs inside an outbuilding on the farm site, using concrete panels that weighed 1.5 tonnes each.
The pair had been provided with a telehandler that also had a fork attachment, in order to lift the panels into position.
However, the employees realised they could not get the device into the correct position or connect it to the necessary hooks while attempting to lift one of the panels.
Therefore, they started to lower the panel to the ground once again, so they could make adjustments, but because it was not secured it toppled onto the legs of one worker, crushing them as a result.
Due to the impact, the worker sustained six fractures to his lower right leg and had to undergo a surgical procedure so a metal rod could be inserted.
Mid and South East Northumberland Magistrates’ Court heard that the injured man was unable to continue working as he was not able to put weight on his leg for a period of four months.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) said that Messrs F T Walton, owners of Flotterton Farm in Morpeth, were ultimately responsible for the incident because they should have ensured that a full plan was in place before the construction work started.
They were also found guilty of failing to supply suitable equipment for lifting the concrete panels.
Messrs F T Walton admitted to breaching Regulation 8(1) Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 and a fine of £5,000 was served with costs of £1,096.
The injured worker was also awarded £2,000 in compensation.