National furniture company, DFS Trading Limited, has been fined for safety failings after a worker suffered serious injuries to neck and head.

On 2 July 2015 the worker was performing a task, which involved unloading from the truck the wooden furniture frames at one of the upholstery sites. While doing this, he was struck by an unsecured furniture arm which fell from an unstable load on his head. The impact knocked the worker unconscious and as a result he suffered serious head and neck injuries.

An investigation carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found, that failure to adequately manage the risks of heavy loads being moved between the sites, lack of supervision of the work carried out on site and a number of near misses reported from unsecured loads eventually lead to this accident.

DFS Trading Limited pleaded guilty for breaching the Management Health and Safety at Work Regulation SI 1999/3242 and Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and have been fined £1 million and ordered to pay the costs of £15,099.

The HSE inspector, Lyn Spooner said: “DFS is a large national organisation. The fundamental and systemic failings identified in their health and safety management systems is far from what would be expected from a company of their size who has the ability to deliver higher standards of safety.” She added: “Unfortunately DFS were unable to do that on this occasion and preventable accident was allowed to occur.”