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    LORRY LOADING LED TO FATAL CRUSHING

    Load slipped during loading by crane releasing three tonnes of steel

    Multinational steelmaker Corus has been fined £240,000 after a lorry driver was crushed to death at its site in Staffordshire.

    The firm was prosecuted HSE after three tonnes of steel plates fell on a 22-year-old workman.

    Load was not level and fell during lifting operation

    Corus (UK) Ltd, was also ordered to pay over £112k in prosecution cots after pleading guilty to contravening HSW Act 1974 Section 3(1) – risk to non-employees.

    The court heard how on 4 January 2007, Mr Beddow, who was employed by A Hingley Transport Ltd, was helping to load steel plates onto a lorry.

    A Corus employee was operating a crane to lift the three-tonne pack of steel from a trailer, however, the load was not level, and as it was lifted it fell on top of Mr Beddow and killed him.

    Unsafe system caused by lack of evaluation and understanding

    The HSE investigation revealed that the system of work for loading steel was unsafe. Some of the individual tasks involved had not been evaluated and there was scope for misunderstanding between workers.

    HSE inspector Dr Wai-Kin Liu said: “This was a tragedy that could and should have been avoided. All the steps involved in an overall task should be analysed to create a safe system of work, and the consequences of something going wrong should always be taken into account.

    “Anyone can make errors – no matter how well trained and motivated they are – but employers must develop a safe way of working that helps to prevent mistakes and reduces the severity of the consequences if they do occur. If Corus had a safe system of working then Mr Beddow would not have been killed simply doing his job.”

    Guidance on lifting operations

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