x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Flying blade sliced into worker's eye, Dubai court hears

Blacksmith lost the sight in his left eye after the blade of a grind stone broke and hit him in the eye, hears court.

DUBAI // A blacksmith lost sight in his left eye after shrapnel from a blade broken by his grindstone flew off, sliced through his safety goggles and embedded itself in his eye.

Colleagues found RR, 26, from India, unconscious in a pool of blood and called emergency services. When the blacksmith regained consciousness two days later he could no longer see with his left eye. He also sustained injuries in his right eye, nose and cheeks in the incident on December 13 last year in his company's headquarters in Jebel Ali, the Misdemeanour Court was told.

The blacksmith's supervisor JB, 46, and the company safety officer AR, 26, both Indian, are charged with negligence.

Prosecutors say they failed to ensure all necessary safety measures were taken and failed to provide labourers with adequate training. The blacksmith told prosecutors he had been working with the company for five years, but had never received any official training and learnt the job only by watching others.

The safety officer told prosecutors he could not be blamed. "I wasn't even there that day, I was called later by police," he said.

A safety inspector from Dubai Free Zone told prosecutors the company failed to report the incident to them when it happened. "They reported it 20 days later," he said. The case was adjourned to February 21.

salamir@thenational.ae