Security firm fined after electric gates trapped three-year-old outside Bournemouth school (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Company has to pay £10k after incident in 2010
A security company has been fined after electric gates trapped a three-year-old boy outside a Bournemouth primary school.
The youngster escaped serious injury thanks to quick-thinking passers-by who pulled him to safety.
But an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) revealed the company had failed to fit appropriate safety devices to the gate. Now it has been fined £3,000 and ordered to pay £7,000 after pleading guilty to breaching safety regulations.
The incident took place more than three years ago but the case against Wiltshire-based Camera Security Services Ltd has only just been heard by Swindon magistrates.
“This was an easily preventable incident that could have had tragic consequences” said HSE inspector Stephan Axt-Simmonds.
“Suppliers and installers of gate automation equipment must remember that they are creating a machine and they must carry out the proper procedures to ensure the equipment they install does not pose a danger to the public.
“Camera Security Services Ltd failed to ensure the equipment they supplied and installed in 2008 was able to operate safely. They had a clear legal requiremen in this regard and should also have been mindful that this particular location would be used by a particularly vulnerable group.”
He stressed that the company is now run by a different team of people following the death of the director last year.
Neil Goddard, Service Director for Community Learning & Commissioning, said: “Immediately following the incident in January 2010, working closely with the Health and Safety Executive and the school, modifications were made to the school gate to ensure a similar incident could not occur again. All electric gates at Council operated sites were also audited to ensure that they did not present any risk.”
Sarah Dunn, headteacher at Heathlands Primary School, said: “We are satisfied with the outcome of the court case and that the supplier of the electric gate has been found at fault.
“We worked closely with the Council and the Health & Safety Executive at the time of the incident to ensure that measures were immediately put in place to ensure that the gate, which is used for vehicles to exit the school grounds, posed no further risk.”
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