At Dudley Magistrates’ Court, a Dudley based logistics company (‘the company’) was fined after pleading guilty to breaching Health & Safety Regulations.
Amandeep Murria of Kangs Solicitors sets out the circumstances.
The Circumstances | Kangs Solicitors Health and Safety Team
The Court heard how an employee sadly died from his injuries whilst trying to attach a trailer to his vehicle.
The trailer, which was initially stationary on a slight slope, rolled forward trapping the employee.
An investigation was undertaken by The Health & Safety Executive which found there was a failure in the safety management arrangements, in that the potential effect of the slope had not been properly addressed when coupling trailers.
The Relevant Law | Kangs Regulatory Law Advisors
The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 (‘the Act’) provides:
‘2 General duties of employers to their employees.
(1) It shall be the duty of every employer to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of all his employees.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of an employer’s duty under the preceding subsection, the matters to which that duty extends include in particular—
(a) the provision and maintenance of plant and systems of work that are, so far as is reasonably practicable, safe and without risks to health;
(b) arrangements for ensuring, so far as is reasonably practicable, safety and absence of risks to health in connection with the use, handling, storage and transport of articles and substances;
(c) the provision of such information, instruction, training and supervision as is necessary to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety at work of his employees;
(d) so far as is reasonably practicable as regards any place of work under the employer’s control, the maintenance of it in a condition that is safe and without risks to health and the provision and maintenance of means of access to and egress from it that are safe and without such risks;
(e) the provision and maintenance of a working environment for his employees that is, so far as is reasonably practicable, safe, without risks to health, and adequate as regards facilities and arrangements for their welfare at work.’
The Hearing | Kangs Health and Safety Solicitors
The company pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 2 (1) of the Act and was:
- fined £1.5 million
- ordered to pay Prosecution Costs of £32,823.35
An Inspector from the Health & Safety Executive, Karl Raw, was quoted as saying:
“Workplace transport remains a high risk environment, and in this case serves as a reminder to industry that assessments of sites should be specific and identify the hazards unique to each yard. It is also a reminder that the slope a vehicle is parked on does not need to be steep for incidents to occur.
This was a tragic and wholly avoidable incident, caused by the failure of the company to adopt robust management action in both planning and monitoring of the workplace and workplace actions at this site.”
How Can We Help? | Kangs Safety At Work Solicitors
Our specialist solicitors are able to provide advice and assistance throughout the entire criminal process, from the initial intervention by the Health and Safety Executive through to enforcement, interview under caution and ultimately the defence of any ensuing criminal prosecution.
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