Nursing Home Owners Fined After Manual Handling Fatality

Annie Bradley a 78 year old lady who was a resident of Harley House Nursing Home in Leicester fell from a hoist in July 2008 and died the following day. Mrs Bradley who had Huntingdon’s disease and was immobile was being transported in a hoist and sling from her bed to a specialist chair when the accident happened. Two sisters who co-owned the care home were successfully prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in August 2012, they were found to be in breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act section 3 (1) and were fined £50,000 and ordered to pay costs of £20,000. It was found in court that both the hoist and the sling were in poor condition. The slings stitching was worn and damaged and was unable to support Mrs Bradley.

After the hearing HSE inspector Richenda Dixon said “with properly maintained equipment, better training and supervision this incident was easily preventable. The risks from hoisting residents in nursing homes are well known and falls during hoisting have resulted in severe injuries, from broken bones through to fatalities. There should have been regular checks on the sling and the hoist, proper planned preventative maintenance carried out and both thoroughly examined by a competent person at least once every six months. Sadly this did not happen and an elderly lady lost her life.”

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