Veolia ES Sheffield Limited (Veolia) and John Fowler and Son (Blacksmiths and Welders) Limited (JFS) both pleaded guilty and were sentenced at Preston Crown Court, after an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
The court heard that, during a refurbishment task at JFS in Chorley, an operative using the controls within the RCV’s cab closed the tailgate on Rick Calsen who was at the rear of the vehicle, fatally crushing him to death.
The RCV was supplied with in-cab controls for raising and lowering the tailgate. The system was designed such that it should not have been possible to completely close the tailgate using the in-cab controls, with a minimum gap of 1m being left between the bottom edges of the body and the tailgate. Examinations revealed a fault with the safety limit switch – it was found to be jammed in the actuated position resulting in it being possible to completely close the tailgate using the in-cab controls.
The HSE investigation found the fatal injury occurred due to a poor system of work at JFS, derived from a lack of a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks, including failure to prop the tailgate adequately.
In addition, Veolia failed in its inspection regime, which did not systematically review the functionality of the 1m safety limit switch (a designated safety function) on relevant RCVs. Had the fault with the 1m safety limit switch been identified and rectified at Veolia, the poor system of work employed at JFS would have been unable to result in the closure of the tailgate causing the entrapment of the worker.
Veolia ES Sheffield Limited of Pentonville Road, London, was found guilty of breaching Regulation 6(2) of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 and Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £750,000 with £11,981 costs.
John Fowler and Son (Blacksmiths and Welders) Limited, of Bexley Square, Salford, Manchester, was found guilty of breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £65,000 with £12,443 costs.
First Floor Offices, 11-23 Market St.
Tel: 01427 678660
HR and Accounts:
26/26a Hickman Street
Tel: 01427 678660
West 1, West Dock Street
Hull HU3 4HH
Tel: 01482 534 348
Hyde Park House, Cartwright Street
Newton, Hyde, Cheshire SK14 4EH
Tel: 0161 367 1214
2450 Regents Court The Crescent
Birmingham Business Park Solihull B37 7YE
Tel: 0121 69 59 290
4th Floor, 86-90 Paul Street
London EC2A 4NE
Tel: 0207 111 0958
Copyright © 2017 Stallard Kane Associates. All rights reserved.