Edinburgh Food Firm Fined after Worker Suffers Hand and Arm Injuries

Jian’s Dumplings Limited has been fined by Edinburgh Sheriff Court after an employee, Joseph Burnett, sustained hand injuries while at work on June 23rd 2010. Mr Burnett had been working at the Edinburgh food firm s to sort ingredients, make Chinese dumplings to order, and package products for nearly four months.

On this particular day he was working with an industrial-sized dough mixer which was used to make dough. Mr Burnett started to add flour to the mixer by hand as he was worried that the dough was too wet. His right hand was subsequently pulled into the drum of the machine. He only successfully pulled himself free after his arm had been pulled in past his elbow. He then alerted his colleagues about what had happened.

Mr Burnett sustained many injuries, including two fractures to his fingers and ripped tendons in his index and middle fingers. He underwent surgery and then needed 30 and 40 stitches. It was necessary for his arm to remain in a plaster cast for eight weeks. He then underwent physiotherapy in order to restore movement to his fingers. However is index finger movement remains limited.

An investigation carried out by the Health and Safety Executive discovered that there had been no risk assessment performed on the operation by the firm. Other safety failings include the fact that there was no training, supervision, instructions for the machine provided or a work safety system in place with regards to using the dough mixer machine. Any instructions provided were in Chinese and even when closed the shutter on top of the machine left an 8 centimetre gap. It also didn’t have any way of shutting down the power provided to dangerous rotating parts whenever the shutter had been lifted.

Jian’s Dumplings Limited was fined £1,000 after they pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.