Dumper death leads to £225,000 fine
A construction company has been fined £225,000 after a groundworker was killed when his dumper truck overturned.
Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court heard that on 3 October 2016, David Scott Green, a groundworker working for Rose Builders, was manoeuvring a 9t front tipping dumper truck on a spoil heap to offload top soil at the Summers Park Development site in Colchester, Essex.
He lost control of the truck which toppled forward and came to rest upside down at the base of the spoil heap. A colleague noticed the overturned truck and ran over to assist, but Green had sustained a serious head injury during the fall and died on scene.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found major deficiencies in the management of tipping operations on the spoil heaps. The investigation found that the operation was not properly planned; drivers were not given instruction or training on how to safely operate vehicles and tip on spoil heaps, and the job itself was poorly supervised. The victim did not have his seat belt fastened and the investigation confirmed that this was common practice on the site.
Rose Builders of Riverside House, East Lawford, Essex pleaded guilty to breaching Sections 2 (1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company has been fined £225,000 and ordered to pay costs of £11,822.90.
HSE inspector Kasia Urbaniak said, “This was a tragic and wholly avoidable incident, caused by the failure of the employer to assess the risk related to tipping operations, implement safe systems of work, and failure to ensure that such systems were communicated to groundworkers and were followed.”