Eight lives were saved after Joseph Robinson, 39, a mechanic from Clitheroe donated his body for organ donation.
This inspiring, yet tragic story started on the 13th October 2020 at the site of E. Jackson Limited in Salthill Industrial Estate, Clitheroe, where Joseph Robinson was working as a mechanic. On that day, Joseph was attempting to fix a steering fault on the firms forklift truck."Joe was always going to be a mechanic. As a little boy he loved to take things apart, see how they worked and put them back together again" - Sue Robinson, Josephs mother. However, on this fateful day, Joe didn't get the chance to put the forklift back together. When he asked another employee to move the vehicle forwards slightly, the vehicle instead lurched backwards pinning him against a trailer.
Joseph was rushed to hospital with severe head injuries and placed in a medically induced coma, hoping it would aid in his recovery. He unfortunately died the following day on the 14th of October 2020. Sue Robinson - "He was a hero in our eyes, honest, hardworking, loyal and generous of spirit as evidenced by his request that in the event of his death that his organs be donated." I'm sure that he is not only Sue's hero, but now a hero to the eight patients (and families) who so desperately needed his organs.
An investigation was carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) who found that the forklift truck Joe was trying to repair was over 30 years old and had not been subjected to a Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) examination in several years. The company ( E. Jackson Limited) had no principles of working with vehicles at the site such as a safe maintenance / repair area.
HSE inspector Shellie Bee said: "This incident could easily have been avoided. The employer should have kept the Forklift Truck in a suitable working condition". Ensuring workplace equipment is regularly inspected helps highlight issues which can cause accident or injury. When a fault is identified, it should be moved into an area where the equipment can be repaired safely. E. Jackson Limited provided Joseph with an inappropriate location to fix the machine. When the forklift moved in a direction he had not anticipated, he was in a confined space with no ability to escape. "Employers should ensure they carry out an assessment of the risks created by forklifts and ensure safe systems of work for their safe operation and maintenance are followed.”
E. Jackson (Chatburn) Limited, of Downham Road, Chatburn, Clitheroe, Lancashire, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. The company was fined £30,000 and ordered to pay costs of £3,712.80 at Crewe Magistrates’ Court on 11 April 2023.
The Good to Go Safety and TakeAIM systems enable employers and employees to run through a series of questions to help highlight potential risks. TakeAIM enables companys' to create there own checklists, which could be anything - such as a warehouse safety inspection or safe maintenance area inspection. Both systems have gas, electric and diesel forklift inspections which can highlight any irregularities, however the team at good to go safety would like to highlight that whilst working in close proximity to heavy machinery, please be extremely cautious and if it doesn't feel safe - don't do it.
Click here to view our inspection systems for Forklift Trucks
Click here to read the full HSE story