UCH Logistics fined after forklift accident

A Middlesex logistics company has been ordered to pay £20,940.40 in fines and costs following a forklift truck accident that left a worker with head injuries.

UCH Logistics, which has ?an O-licence authorising ?26 vehicles and 10 trailers, pleaded guilty to breaching health and safety regulations at its yard in Staines, following an incident in September last year that saw an employee being hit by a reversing forklift truck.

Andrew Elliss, a UCH employee from Isleworth, suffered head injuries that he continues to feel the effects of.

CCTV footage seen by the HSE, which prosecuted the company, showed forklifts loading and unloading vehicles at the site, with pedestrians regularly weaving between them.

Redhill Magistrates’ Court was told that the company’s yard had been resurfaced a ?few years before the accident and no markings had been made on the ground to segregate pedestrians from moving vehicles.

Airfreight haulier UCH Logistics, of Stanwell Moor Road in Staines, pleaded ?guilty to breaching the Workplace (Health, Safety ?and Welfare) Regulations ?1992 and was fined £20,000 ?with £942.40 in prosecution ?costs on 13 October.

HSE inspector Russell Beckett said: “Workplace transport incidents are the third highest cause of workplace fatalities, and accidents can be prevented if companies implement simple control measures.

“The need to walk through this area was clearly foreseeable and the risk from vehicle traffic was high. When I saw the CCTV footage, it was clear this was an accident waiting to happen.”

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Operation Stack alternatives to be presented ‘within weeks'

Permanent solutions to Operation Stack will be put to the government “within weeks”, according to Highways England.

Speaking to a committee of MPs about the problems caused in the summer by the use of the emergency contingency measure on the M20 in Kent, Highways England network delivery and development director David Brewer said it had identified
three or four sites where HGVs could park up.

He said under normal circumstances investigations of this kind would have taken a year, but Highways England expected to sit down with the government “within a matter of weeks”.

However, he added: “The earliest we are looking at being able to have off-network parking is next autumn.”

Kent County Council leader Paul Carter said he favoured the construction of a 4,000-space lorry park and that it could be built for up to £150m.

Both the FTA and RHA said an off-road solution was the best alternative.