• Barry Michael Aldridge

World Day for Safety and Health at Work

With Thursday 28th April 2022 being World Day for Safety and Health at Work, it is worth considering a few statistics which highlight the need to make working environments as safe as can possibly be.



According to awarenessdays.com there are approximately 6,300 workplace deaths per day, equating to 2.3 deaths per year with 317 million annual accidents at work.


Whilst the numbers fluctuate yearly, they are staggeringly high. These figures highlight that much more needs to be done globally to protect working people.


Working within the realms of engineering, manufacturing and hydraulics and thinking about the theme of safety and health awareness, it is worth re-visiting the high-profile case of firefighter Ian McDonald who lost a limb after an incident during a standard training exercise.


In March of 2014, firefighter Ian McDonald was taking part in a training exercise with his employer, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service when the cutting gear he was working with suffered a hydraulic hose failure resulting in a jet of high-pressure hydraulic fluid tearing through his PPE leather glove and piercing his hand.


The toxic fluid began to destroy McDonald’s tissue. When Ian noticed his hand swelling and began to feel a burning sensation, he was taken to hospital.

After an X-ray, it was discovered that Mr McDonald had oil in his hand.

Over a four-year period, he suffered a great amount of pain and increasing immobility and underwent 40 operations as doctors did everything that they could to keep his hand working.

Ian’s hand was finally amputated in June 2018.

This harrowing story highlights the need to ensure the upmost safety of hydraulic equipment to protect employees from injury and harm.


SME Flotec takes the safety and health of its employees and stakeholders incredibly seriously and has taken measures to ensure it operates in the safest way possible.


As such, Flotec is certified to the very latest ISO 9001 : 2015 standards for quality, is RISQS accredited and are members of the British Fluid Power Association. Additionally, the company is a disability confident employer and employs two mental wellbeing first aid responders.


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