A film production company that admitted health and safety breaches over an accident that crushed the actor Harrison Ford’s leg on the set of Star Wars: The Force Awakens has been fined £1.6 million.
A judge at Aylesbury Crown Court handed down the penalty to Disney-owned Foodles Production (UK) Ltd. The company had admitted two counts at a hearing in July, which had been told that the Han Solo actor could have been killed.
Ford, who was seventy one, needed surgery to screw together a fractured tibia and fibula after being knocked to the ground and pinned down by a steel door on the set of the Millennium Falcon spaceship, at Pinewood Studios in June 2014. He also needed plastic surgery on a deep cut in his hand.
Judge Francis Sheridan said the risk had not been communicated to the star. “The greatest failing of all on behalf of the company is a lack of communication, a lack because, if you have a risk assessment and you do not communicate it, what is the point of having one? That is the most serious breach here. If only they had included Mr Ford in all the discussions, he might have at least been alert to the dangers that he had to avoid.”
The company was also ordered to pay nearly £21,000 in costs. In a statement, Foodles said “The safety of our cast and crew was always a top priority and we deeply regret this unfortunate on-set accident. The Court acknowledged both the additional safety protocols that were immediately implemented, and that it was a very safe production in all other respects.
The Health and Safety Executive, which brought the action against the company,