Company director spared jail after teenager lost finger on first day at work

The director of a dog food company has been given a suspended prison sentence after a teenage boy severed and lost his finger on his first day working at the firm.

Company director Gary Pitchford was given a six-month custodial sentence, which was suspended for a period of 12 months.

The new starter, who was 16 at the time, had been hired by Finer By Nature after leaving school and began working there on 15 July 2020.

Kidderminster Magistrates Court heard that the middle finger on the teen’s right hand was sliced off while assisting another worker operating a food processing machine, used to package dog food, at the company’s site at Whitestone Business Park in Hereford.

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found Finer By Nature had failed to make suitable and sufficient assessments of the risks involved with this type of work…

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