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  1. ITV Report

Firm fined £1m after young apprentice is killed by exploding tyre

A company has been fined £1 million after a young apprentice died when a tyre he was changing exploded in his face.

Matthew Hoare,

Matthew Hoare, 21, died when a tyre he was changing exploded, throwing him more than 30 feet.

Watling Tyres admitted two breaches of health and safety regulations for the tragic incident on January 27, 2006.

Judge Adele Williams told lawyers for the company that its directors bore "a heavy responsibility" for the tragedy.

She also told them that Matthew had been sent to do a job for which he wasn't properly trained, with inadequate and unsafe equipment and work practices.

There was no proper supervision by the directors of their managers who had showed a sloppy and complacent attitude towards Health and Safety.

– Judge Adele Williams

The firm was ordered to pay the fine and £100,000 prosecution costs by July.

The company's barrister asked it they could pay it over two years, but the judge responded that they should have put money aside, and gave them an extra month.

Earlier, judge Williams heard how Matthew, from Kent was a loving and much-loved son and brother and the family's grief "was still immense".

He made such a great contribution to the lives of others and will be sorely missed.

– Judge Adele Williams

The judge added that Matthew's family had every right to expect his company to protect him and keep him safe at work.