Co Antrim company NK Coatings fined £120k after death of worker

NK Coatings Ltd. Pic UTV
NK Coatings has been fined £120,000. Credit: UTV

A Northern Ireland metal finishing company has been fined £120,000 following the death of an employee.

Mallusk-based NK Coatings Limited earlier pleaded guilty at Belfast Crown Court following the death of an employee at the factory site.

The prosecution arose following a Health and Safety Executive investigation into an incident that occurred on 23 September 2020, when a metal storage rack fell from the forks of a counterbalance fork-lift truck, resulting in fatal injuries to 56-year-old Leslaw Mazur.

The investigation found that a risk assessment had not been completed for the activity and the method used to turn the structure was unsafe placing workers at risk. 

A prohibition notice was served on the Co Antrim company by a health and safety inspector following the incident.

Kyle Carrick, head of HSENI’s Major Investigation Team said: “This tragic incident was avoidable.

"Any activity involving lifting equipment must be properly planned by a competent person, appropriately supervised and carried out in a safe manner.

“Employers should be aware that HSENI will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those who are found to fall below the required standards."

In a statement, a spokesperson for NK Coatings said: “The management team of NK Coatings and all of its employees today remember our friend and colleague Leslaw 'Lenny' Mazur.

"We have all been deeply impacted by the tragic events of 23rd September 2020, and continue to feel sadness and loss following the accident and Lenny’s passing.

"NK Coatings Ltd takes full responsibility for the events surrounding this accident. 

"Today the company formally and publicly accepted its responsibility and pleaded guilty to a health and safety charge before the Crown Court.

"We have since continued to work tirelessly, in conjunction with the Health & Safety Executive (NI), to further improve and enhance safety at our production site.

"We continue to offer our deepest condolences to Lenny’s family and friends."

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