Machine was ‘accident waiting to happen’ as inquest into Houghton Regis factory worker’s death concludes

A jury reached a conclusion of “accidental death” as the inquest of a worker crushed by machinery in Houghton Regis closed today.

Wednesday, 3rd April 2019, 7:11 pm
Updated Wednesday, 3rd April 2019, 7:17 pm

Brett Dolby, 44, died at the Scapa Tapes Ltd factory in Humphrys Road on April 10 last year.

Mr Dolby was found by fellow workers trapped in the ‘Duffy’ machinery during the night shift at the factory.

Giving evidence on the second day of the inquest at Ampthill Court House, Scapa’s head of health and safety, Steve Giblin, said that the factory had acquired the Duffy machine involved in the incident in 2004.

An inquest was held today

There had been no prior accidents with the machine before Mr Dolby’s death, but it has now been removed from Scapa.

The jury was told that the product is still being sold on the market without any mechanical safeguards.

The Health and Safety Executive found that the machine was in breach of current regulations. HSE specialist investigator David Rudland said it was “very fortunate” there had been no earlier incidents and told the jury it was “an accident waiting to happen”.

He stated that the machine should have been fitted a mechanical guard or a laser sensor to prevent workers coming into contact with it.