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News

HSE challenges motor vehicle repair industry to reduce its fatality record

HSE InfoLine : 09 August, 2004  (Company News)
Recently published figures from the Health and Safety Commission on fatal injuries in Health and Safety Executive and local authority enforced sectors for 2003/04 show increases in the number of fatal incidents involving motor vehicle repair activities.
Recently published figures from the Health and Safety Commission on fatal injuries in Health and Safety Executive and local authority enforced sectors for 2003/04 show increases in the number of fatal incidents involving motor vehicle repair activities.

The figures show that eight workers died as a result of accidents while involved in MVR activities, with a further six deaths occurring so far in the current reporting year.

The eight fatalities in the 2003/04 were:

three fatal incidents caused by workers being struck by a moving vehicle because the handbrake had been left off;

a mechanic who died when another vehicle travelling along the motorway struck the vehicle he was working on;

three employees who were crushed to death while working under vehicles, in one case at the roadside and in another when the vehicle fell off a raised two-post vehicle lift; and

one fatal fire resulting from the mishandling of petrol where an apprentice mechanic died after being engulfed in flames, and several vehicles on the garage forecourt were also destroyed.
John Powell, from HSE's Manufacturing Sector and Chair of the MVR Health and Safety Forum said:

'All of these deaths were avoidable. Simple things such as leaving parked vehicles with their handbrakes on or ensuring that vehicles were properly supported before going underneath them could be enough to save a life. Precautions to prevent almost all types of accidents in MVR are often simple and inexpensive.

'Sadly, there have been a further six deaths in the first four months of this year, three of them in separate fires or explosions to self-employed workers and involving the ignition of petrol vapours.

'The death toll in the MVR industry is unacceptable. Everyone must work harder to ensure that the appropriate measures are in place to prevent further tragedies.

'The HSE and representatives from the industry have been working together to publish best practice solutions. If businesses bookmark HSE's MVR website as one of their favourites they will be 'just one click away from health and safety advice' to prevent accidents and ill health in the industry'.
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