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Triple Prosecution Follows Fatal Accident at Work


An accident at work compensation claim could well follow a triple prosecution by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), following the death of an employee at a London construction site.

The body recently stated that Gerry Fox, general foreman at Euro Earthworks, was killed after an excavator bucket filled with concrete fell on him on 28th August 2007.

According to an investigation by the HSE, Michael Cunningham, who was operating the excavator, failed to insert a pin into the ’quick hitch’ section of the machine, which meant the bucket was not safely locked. In addition, he had positioned the bucket directly over both Mr Fox and a site supervisor.

Furthermore, the organisation found Euro Earthworks did not “adequately plan, manage and monitor” the work being carried out on site, while Hydro Plant, the plant hire company that provided the excavator, had neither a satisfactory regime of inspection for the plant and supply warning signs nor written instructions with the vehicle.

Hydro Plant was also found to have neglected to ensure all attachments that came with the plant were in working order and an efficient state.

As a result, all three parties have been ordered to pay a total of £51,700 in fines.

HSE inspector Loraine Charles commented: “This tragic incident was entirely preventable. There had already been a significant number of incidents involving buckets becoming detached from quick hitches, in particular semi-automatic quick hitches where operators had failed to insert the safety pin.”

Laura Morrison, specialist solicitor in dealing with accidents in the workplace at Clear Law Solicitors, added: "It’s disappointing to see that entirely avoidable accidents at work continue to occur in the UK.

"With companies and individuals failing to realise the importance of health and safety in the work place, compensation is still extremely important for those affected by such incidents.

“If you or a family member has been injured at work, recovering money from those culpable is often the only way of compensating for your suffering - though it can never do so fully - and affording essentials such as medical treatment and rehabilitation.”

-Notes to Editor-

Clear Law Solicitors specialises in personal injury and accident at work compensation claims. For more information about accident at work claims visit:


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 workplace injury
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