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Compensation could be sought by a man who sustained a severe hand injury during an accident at work.
Robert Davenport suffered a crushed thumb and serious burn injuries to his left hand when his arm became trapped in machinery while he worked at premises owned by Ley Rubber in Liverpool in December 2010.
At the time of this accident, the 47-year-old was attempting to make adjustments to the equipment while it ran on a preset timed cycle at temperatures of around 200 degrees C so it could connect two pieces of rubber together.
However, while he was touching the machine, the metal clamps holding the material in place were released and trapped Mr Davenport's hand against its control panel.
The employee subsequently required treatment at the Royal Liverpool Hospital and had to take nine months off work in order to recover fully from his injuries.
An investigation conducted by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) found that Ley Rubber failed to put a guard in place on the equipment to prevent workers' hands from getting trapped.
During a case heard at South Sefton Magistrates' Court, the company admitted breaching the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 by not carrying out adequate risk assessments before allowing the job to be conducted.
Consequently, it was hit with a fine of £15,000, meaning Mr Davenport, who still struggles to use his left hand fully, may now opt to seek compensation for his injuries.
Phil Redman, inspector at the HSE, said proper analysis of the depot would have led to the identification of the risks present and the need for a guard to be installed on the machine.
"The firm was able to fit suitable guards just two days after we visited the site, but if they had been in place at the time of the incident then it could have been avoided altogether," he added.
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