Falling MDF causes serious injury

Published:  10 February, 2010

WOKING: A Surrey woodworking company has been given a conditional discharge after a worker was seriously injured by large falling MDF boards.

At North West Surrey Magistrates in Woking on Friday 5 February 2010, the Court heard the incident took place on 17 May 2008 at Thistle Woodworks' site in Lightwater, Surrey.

A stack of MDF (medium density fibreboard) panels, which were more than two metres long and over a metre wide were stacked vertically against a closed door to the workshop. A number of these boards fell on top of one of the employees, who as a result, suffered fractures to the left side of his forehead, his eye socket, cheek bone and left arm.

HSE Inspector Suzanne Matthews said: "This method of stacking boards was inherently unsafe and injuries were inevitable if the stack was disturbed. This company failed its employee, who suffered several severe fractures as a result.

"Boards should never be stacked on their edge without adequate support. They should be stored flat, or in a 'pigeonhole' or 'toast rack' arrangement with staff clearly told about the dangers of propping boards with inadequate support."

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