TK Maxx has been fined £50,000 after an employee had an accident on its premises that left him hospitalised and in a coma.
Christopher Polles, 51, fell off a stepladder while working at the company’s distribution centre in Chesterton, Staffordshire in 2005. The resulting head injuries left him unconscious for almost a month. He is now back at work with TK Maxx but can no longer drive.
Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court heard that Polles was tending to a conveyor belt that frequently became blocked with cardboard boxes. In order to reach the belt he had to stand on a ladder. TK Maxx had been aware of the problem with the belt and were planning to install a new system.
The company admitted failing to ensure the health and safety of employees and to ensure that a suitable risk assessment was in place. It was fined £50,000 and ordered to pay £9,887 in costs.
TK Maxx said it deeply regretted the accident. The conveyor belt has now been lowered.