Private security firm sentenced after employee attacked at a youth offender training centre
A private security company has been fined after an employee suffered life-changing injuries when he was assaulted by four individuals at a young offender’s training facility in Milton Keynes.
The Magistrates Court at Milton Keynes heard that on the 15th of March 2017 a secure care officer was operating alone with a group of 6 trainees on an outdoor fenced football pitch at Oakhill Secure Training Centre.
The worker had been at the company for around 3/4 months and during the activity one of the individuals tried to climb the fence. The situation escalated resulting in the worker being attached by four of the group.
The worker sustained multiple injuries
The SCO sustained multiple injuries to the head and body which resulted in hospitalisation. The individual suffered brain damage and had to have a plate fitted in his skull.
The SCO spent a further 2 months in a specialist brain injury rehabilitation centre.
After the incident and rehabilitation, the worker stated “When I came round from the coma I could not walk without assistance and I would sleep for around 17 hours a day. I was on medication for about a year, this was mainly to prevent epilepsy which is common following a brain injury.”
After an investigation by the HSE, it was found that G$S Care and Justice Services failed to ensure there were robust procedures in place to protect staff and ensure inexperienced staff were not left alone with young people who had the potential for violence.
G4S Care and Justice Services (UK) Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching section 2(1) and Section 33(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. They were fined £250,000 and ordered to pay costs of £13,787.
Thames Valley Police carried out a separate criminal investigation against the individuals involved.
"“If proper procedures and supervision had been in place to prevent inexperienced officers from working alone in high risk situations, the life changing injuries sustained by the employee could have been prevented.”
: HSE Inspector Stephen Faulkner"