ENTERTAINMENT

The father of six died after falling into a faulty cardboard recycling machine earning 3 pounds an hour


A father of six died after falling into a recycling baler that had many safety features disabled.

Gul Daad Khan, 36, worked long hours on a sprawling site in Digbeth, Birmingham, where workers claimed they made a little over £ 3 an hour.

He died in the horror accident on October 12, 2016 on Liverpool Street premises after falling into a baler that he was trying to unlock.

The property is owned by Cardboard 4 Cash Ltd, which changed its name to C4C Investments Ltd. in 2018. changed.

An investigation revealed that the baler in question was leased from Cardboard 4 Cash to another recycling company, Mr Recycle Ltd.

Gul Daad Khan, 36, (pictured) died after falling into a recycling baler that had many safety features disabled

This company operated ashore on Liverpool Street, which Cardboard 4 Cash Ltd bought in 2014 for £ 631,000.

The investigation was told that many of the baler's safety features were disabled, no risk assessments had been conducted, and no safety equipment was provided to employees.

These results were not tied to a specific company.

After the tragedy on October 12, 2016, the health and safety officer opened an investigation.

Yet almost four years later, no one has been charged with death in an industry where at least 19 workers have been killed since 2017.

The terrifying details of the tragedy were revealed during the investigation, which identified the official cause of death as "crush asphyxia".

Mr Khan worked long hours on a sprawling site in Digbeth, Birmingham (pictured) where workers claimed they made just over £ 3 an hour

Mr Khan worked long hours on a sprawling site on the back road in Digbeth, Birmingham (pictured), where workers claimed they made just over £ 3 an hour

Mr. Khan had climbed onto the giant baler used to shred cardboard after it got jammed but fell into the machine and was fatally injured.

In his written investigation report, then coroner James Bennett said, “The baler was blocked from being overloaded with cardboard. To clear the blockage, the deceased climbed onto the top of the baler. He fell into the machine, which then continued to operate. & # 39;

The coroner listed a number of "contributing" problems that contributed to the death.

& # 39; Many of the baler's safety features were disabled. The baler hadn't been serviced, ”he said.

& # 39; No action was taken to respond to any safety concern raised in previous health and safety audits. No risk assessments were carried out. There were no safe work systems for general work or for clearing blockages.

He died in the horror accident on October 12, 2016 on the grounds of Liverpool Street (picture) after falling into a baler which he was trying to unlock

He died in the horror accident on October 12, 2016 on the grounds of Liverpool Street (picture) after falling into a baler that he was trying to unlock

& # 39; No training was carried out. There was no supervision. The view around the baler was poor. No safety equipment was provided to employees. Wet cardboard was a tripping hazard. & # 39;

A statement from Mr. Khan's former roommate and work colleague Gulbacha Yousafhail was read out on request and he spoke about the low wages and working conditions under which they both worked.

He told the court he was illiterate and didn't even know the address of the place where he worked six days a week, eleven hours a day, for just £ 35 – about £ 3.18 an hour.

From their wages, he and Mr. Khan paid £ 100 a month for a shared room in Lozells. Both had worked on the construction site for around three years.

Gulbacha said: “Nobody was trained in this factory. I have never been trained and have never said or advised anything about health and safety.

“I just got a jacket to wear and that's it.

“Most of the time I cleaned and I thought I was safe. I thought the other workers felt confident because nobody liked to be hurt.

"Cardboard would be brought to this place in vans and then bundles would be made and exported to China in large containers."

Speaking of the day of Mr. Khan's death, he said, “The incident didn't happen before me.

“I cleaned and Gul Dad worked on the machine.

Then all of a sudden people started yelling that Gul Dad was hurt. When I got there, he was already dead. & # 39;

He said he believed Mr. Khan was hit by a conveyor belt that the machine was running on, a belt that his former colleague had previously repaired.

Mr. Khan had climbed onto the giant baler used to shred cardboard after it got jammed but fell into the machine and was fatally injured. An aerial photo of the recycling point is shown

Mr. Khan had climbed onto the giant baler used to shred cardboard after it got jammed but fell into the machine and was fatally injured. An aerial photo of the recycling point is shown

"This conveyor belt is about two meters wide," he said.

“Some time ago, when it had a hole in its belt, it was about half a meter. This hole was repaired by Gul Dad and he fixed it by sticking some long screws into it. But the owners never really fixed it. & # 39;

The investigation found that the machine owned by Mr Recycle Ltd, of which Lee Piper is the sole director, was leased from Cardboard 4 Cash.

In one unrelated case, Piper, 40, from West Bromwich, was jailed for ten years in December 2018 for sexual offenses including rape, attempted rape, sexual assault, ABH and incitement to prostitution.

We wrote separately to Piper in prison and Kulvinder Singh Sidhu, the director of Cardboard 4 Cash, to comment on the allegations made during the investigation that the machine was improperly repaired prior to Mr. Khan's death.

No response was received at the time of publication.

The investigation had said about his lost colleague and friend Gulbacha: “I lived with Gul Dad for a long time and he was a healthy and perfect person and as far as I know he had no medical problem.

"He never drank because we are Muslims."

When first contacted, West Midlands Police said the Health and Safety Executive was leading the investigation – while HSE said it was the force.

Cardboard 4 Cash Ltd and Mr Recycle Ltd each received improvement notices on November 2, 2016 and a further six notices of prohibition between November 3 and 11, 2016 on the subject of occupational health and safety, the provision and use of work equipment and electricity regulations.

Orders included prohibiting the use of the baler until it had been properly inspected and serviced by a competent person and any deficiencies found were corrected to ensure it was safe to operate and safety devices were in place to work. & # 39;

Companies were also banned from using some forklifts until safety investigations were carried out. Once a prohibition notice has been served, the restrictions will remain in place as long as business is up and running.

Activity should not be resumed or resumed until the issues identified in the Prohibition Notice have been resolved.

According to the latest statistics, seven people were fatally injured in the waste and recycling industry in 2018/19 – compared to twelve in the previous year.

The death rate for waste management should only be in second place after the agricultural sector.

A spokesman for the Health and Safety Executive said, “The investigation into the incident is ongoing and HSE supports and continues to work with West Midlands Police, which maintains the investigation priority under the Work Related Death Protocol.

"As the investigation has not yet been completed, we cannot make any further comments at this time."

An inspection of the Liverpool Street site took place in May 2019, the HSE confirmed.

This week West Midlands Police confirmed that priority was given to the HSE for the investigation.

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