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SHOVEL LOADER DEATH CAUSED BY ‘AD HOC’ APPROACH

Skip hire company prosecuted over failure to separate people and plant

Need a Skip Limited has been ordered to pay £170,000 in fines and prosecution costs following the death of an employee run over by a 13-tonne shovel loader. The 24-year-old worker died of his injuries when the loader struck him as he was crouching over a manhole cleaning out a drain pump in the company yard on 11 September 2006.

HSE investigators found the company lacked a transport plan to segregate people from vehicles and the company had not adhered to its health and safety training plan.

Company previously informed of workplace transport risks

Need a Skip Ltd of West Bromwich, pleaded guilty to breaching HSW Act Section 2(1) and was fined £45,000 and ordered to pay costs of £125,000. The court was told the company had previously been informed of the risks associated with workplace transport by HSE during a routine inspection.

After the hearing HSE inspector Karl Raw said:

“Transport is one of the biggest causes of death and injury within the workplace, especially where the machinery in use is large.

It is imperative that where people and machinery need to work in close proximity the employer ensures, wherever possible, that measures are implemented to segregate them or put in place suitable and effective measures to ensure safety of their employees.

The ad hoc approach by Need a Skip to its on-site activities, combined with heavy machinery moving around, meant there was a high potential for an incident to occur.”

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