• Robert Spicer

Care Centre choking death: Shropshire Council fined for health and safety offence

Care centre death: £25,000 fine

Health and Safety Executive v Shropshire Council (2016) Shrewsbury Crown Court, January 8

Shropshire Council has been fined following the death of a vulnerable man at a care centre.

Significant points of the case

  • In September 2012 Michael Breeze attended the council-run day services care centre, Hartley’s Day Centre, in Shrewsbury.

  • The Centre caters for adults with learning disabilities. Mr Breeze was taken there for the day with a packed lunch provided by the carers at the residential home where he lived.

  • At midday Mr Breeze started to eat his lunch. He started to choke and collapsed. He went into respiratory arrest and did not recover.

  • He had a history of choking incidents. Appropriate safeguards were n tut in place at the Centre despite these warnings.

Shropshire Council was fined £25,000 plus £39,000 costs for a breach of section 3, HSW Act, for failing to ensure the health and safety of non-employees.

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