Norfolk

Baldwin Skip Hire man 'killed by machine bought on eBay'

James Criddle Image copyright Norfolk Police
Image caption James Criddle was working for Baldwin Skip Hire in Besthorpe when his clothes became caught in machinery

An employee at a skip hire firm suffocated when his clothes became caught in machinery, a court heard.

James Criddle, 29, had been operating a screener machine at Baldwin Skip Hire in Besthorpe, Norfolk, in May 2017 when he died, Norwich Crown Court was told.

Jurors were told the tool was bought second-hand on eBay and had no safety guards.

The company's managing director Robert Baldwin, 47, denies manslaughter due to gross negligence.

Mr Baldwin, of Silver Street, Besthorpe, near Attleborough, also denies a charge of neglect in failing to discharge a duty.

'Workers not protected'

The screener, which includes a cylindrical drum and sorts material of different sizes, was brought to the skip hire site five days before Mr Criddle's death on 15 May - the court heard.

Prosecutor Julia Faure-Walker, prosecuting, said: "It was bought second-hand on eBay and not in the condition it would have gone to market.

Image caption Baldwin Skip Hire's managing director Robert Baldwin, 47, denies manslaughter due to gross negligence

"The guards had been removed. The workers were not protected from the dangerous working parts."

Ms Faure-Walker told the court that a new safety guard would have prevented contact with the machinery.

She added that when Mr Baldwin was interviewed by police he said in a prepared statement the lack of guarding on the machinery was "not obvious".

The trial continues.

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