DIY company fined after sledgehammer head breaks off

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A DIY company has been fined thousands of pounds after the head of one of their sledgehammers flew off while being used by a customer.

A representative of DK Tools Limited, brand owners of AmTech which produces the sledgehammer, appeared in court on Thursday and pleaded guilty to the charge of failing to take steps to ensure their 6lb AmTech sledgehammers are safe, under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005.

In May last year a customer using the product complained to the Milton Keynes Council Regulatory Unit after the head of it came off as he swung it back.

DK Tools Limited admitted that the sledgehammers, which they had imported from China, had not been independently tested and they had taken no steps to ensure they were safe. They admitted they had wholly relied on their trust of the manufacturers in China alone.

When sentencing the company, District Judge Matthews said there had been an “obvious risk of injury” in this case and ordered the company to pay a fine of £2,800 and £5,000 costs.

Karen Ford, Head of Milton Keynes Council’s Regulatory Unit said: “The outcome of this incident could have been catastrophic. Had someone been in the path of this flying sledgehammer head they could have been seriously injured, or worse.

“We will not hesitate to take appropriate action where failure to meet safety legislation puts the public at risk.”