The company's managing director overrode the safety system of a blocked carding machine in order to clear the blockage. His clothing became entangled in the machine and he was pulled into it and killed.
The textile manufacturing company often allowed the workforce to use a spare key to access machinery. They they so while it was still operational. HSE had already given the company, Felt Supplies Ltd Dewsbury, a Prohibition Notice to stop these unsafe working practices.
However, these unsafe practices continued to take place. This lead to the fatal accident. These unsafe conditions took place with the knowledge and consent of company director Wazir Hussain, the brother of the man who was killed.
HSE inspector Jacqueline Ferguson commented: "This is a tragic incident that could so easily have been avoided. In this case it was the Director that was fatally injured and it could so easily have been an employee, in which case, we may have been looking at a corporate manslaughter charge."
The company was fined £175,000 with £64,165.55 costs by Leeds Crown Court. Wazir Hussain was handed a 12 month suspended prison sentence for 18 months.
For more information, see HSE's article from 16 December 2016.