A Keighley haulage company was yesterday fined £5,000 after one of its employees suffered brain damage when he was struck on the head by a 290-kilogram panel saw.

Nicholas Holmes, 49, of Bradford, was delivering saws to the Saw Centre in Eglinton Street, Glasgow, on August 16, 2007, when one fell off the vehicle, hitting him on the head.

Mr Holmes was left with permanent brain damage by the incident.

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that Mr Holmes’s employers Joda Freight Limited, of Riparian Way, Cross Hills, did not have a reliable system of communication in place to make sure their drivers were informed about the securing and stability of loads.

Mr Holmes had not been told anything about how the panel saws were secured in the lorry.

When he removed the straps securing the saws, the load became unstable, causing the incident.

At Glasgow Sheriff Court yesterday, Joda Freight Limited pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Following the case, HSE Inspector Jean Edgar said it was a bad accident.

She said: “This was a horrific incident and will have terrible consequences for Mr Holmes and his family for many years to come.

“Haulage companies must make sure information is properly communicated between drivers in how a load is secured and strapped.

“Verbal messages through a third party may not be enough.

“This is particularly important where the delivery driver did not load the vehicle – and has little information on the precise strapping method used to secure it.

“Every year about 70 people are killed and thousands more suffer major injuries in incidents involving vehicles in and around workplaces.

“A significant number of these occur during deliveries and collections.

“Suppliers, hauliers and recipients must co-operate and ensure their drivers are trained to assess delivery and collection risks and reduce them as far as possible.”