Shropshire Star

Shocking lack of health safety at yard where worker was 'shredded to death' laid bare

Te shocking lack of health and safety procedures at a firm where a worker fell to his death in an industrial shredder has been laid bare by a judge.

CCTV showed the moment Brian Timmins lifted David Willis onto the shredder

Sentencing yard manager Brian Timmins and Timmins Waste Services, the company he ran with his brothers, for manslaughter at Wolverhampton Crown Court this week, Justice Richard Jacobs described how the death of labourer David Willis was "an accident waiting to happen".

David Willis. death on September 15, 2018, could have been prevented if the firm had adhered to the most basic of health and safety regulations concerning the powerful industrial shredder bought to make profit

Despite the machine's user manual repeatedly warning how dangerous it could be, the Mander Street company did not carry out one risk assessment in the year it was in operation before killing the 29-year-old.

Fining the company £400,000 for corporate manslaughter and jailing yard manager Brian Timmins for seven and a half years, Justice Jacobs described the shocking lack of care for employees.

He said: "These offences relate to the death of David Willis in horrific circumstances. He was a young man aged 29 years when he was shredded to death in an industrial shredder which was being operated by Brian Timmins.

"No words of mine can convey the tragedy of what happened on September 15, 2018. He was a hard-working young man but he was so much more than that, he was a loving son.

"The family's lives have been forever blighted by what is usually called an industrial accident. But the word accident conveys what happened could be down to bad luck.

"However, Dave's death was the result of the wholesale neglect of a proper approach to health and safety at Timmins Waster Services and the complete disregard of Brian Timmins concerning the risk of injury and death.

"This was an accident that was waiting to happen."