National bread makers Warburtons has been fined £2 million after a worker was hospitalised following a fall.

Wolverhampton Crown Court heard how on 11 November 2013 the man was cleaning one of the mixing machines at their Wednesbury bakery, a routine job he carried out every few weeks, when he lost his footing and fell nearly two-meters.

The father-of-one, who had worked at the factory since 2007, was hospitalised with a compression fracture in his spine. He was not able to return to work until December 2014 but was unable to continue in his old role and was dismissed in December 2015 after another long period of sick leave.

The Health and Safety Investigation found that Warburtons Limited routinely expected their workers to access the top of the mixers to clean them. The workers were often unbalanced and would brace themselves to stop from falling. The workers were not adequately supervised and there had been no training on how the mixer needed to be cleaned at height. The company failed to control the risk of falls from height when carrying out this routine cleaning activity.

Warburtons Limited, Hereford Street, Bolton, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 6(3) of the Work at Height Regulation 2005 and was fined £2million and ordered to pay costs of £19,609.28.

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