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    WELDER ELECTROCUTED IN FLOODED SPACE

    Water entering confined space ends in death of welder

    Richards Dry Dock and Engineering Ltd has been ordered to pay over £60k in fines and prosecution costs after a welder was electrocuted. The prosecution relates to an incident in August 2005 when welder Kevin Hall was working inside a confined space. Other work above caused water to inadvertently flow down and into the space below where Mr Hall was working and he was electrocuted. 

    HSE Inspector John Claxton said: “This death should make clear to all the extremely dangerous nature of the work in confined spaces. The procedures in place were inadequate for a known and well established risk and the incident was completely avoidable. Any work in confined spaces is extremely hazardous and proper precautions must always be taken at all times for this kind of work. Don’t enter unless you absolutely have to.”

    He added: “If you are going to enter a confined space then you must have fully trained staff, a documented system of work, atmospheric monitoring and emergency rescue arrangements. There may be no oxygen inside, or toxic gases may have built up. Or, as in this case, there may be risk of flooding and electrocution. The HSE wishes to make it clear that we expect the risks associated with this type of work to be properly managed in accordance with published guidance”

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