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Drinks firm fined after contractor exposed to ozone gas

A soft drinks manufacturer was ordered to pay out more than £30,000 yesterday after a contractor working at the company was exposed to ozone gas.

The contractor had been brought in to service a machine in the Kegworth factory and has reported a number of health issues since the incident.

A Loughborough court heard how the previously active man had been left with severe asthmatic problems and on anti-depressants following the visit.

Yesterday the company pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act between March and July 2012.

The man’s defence team explained how he had been left to work in a room with a ozone-producing machine which had a leak.

He felt ill and went and rested in his car before returning to finish another job on a a separate piece of equipment which produces ultra-violet light.

“Quite simply the company failed to take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of its employees and non-employees on that site,” he said.

The incident victim said, “I am not the same man, I have flashbacks about the incident and worry about the future.”

The company was fined £20,000 over the incident and instructed to pay the worker £11,500 in compensation.

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