Teesside Crown Court has fined a Teesside based company £400,000 and ordered to pay £107,684.40 costs after pleading guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has investigated an incident where a 59 year old agency worker from Middlesborough was fatally injured on 9 September 2012 at Hartlepool dock.
The HSE reported that 6 workers were loading 12m long steel pipes into the hold of a vessel. During this task the employees were standing on the stack of steel pipes while a crane continued to load further pipes into the hold.
The worker fell 8 metres from the stack and later died of his injuries.
The court was told that the firm had failed to provide protection or implement any appropriate measures to prevent or minimise falls.
After the hearing, HSE inspector Cain Mitchell said: “This was a tragedy that could have very easily been prevented. The company should have properly assessed the risks and ensured appropriate measures were in place to reduce the risks of falling. The risk of a fall from an 8 metre stack of pipes was obvious. These precautions could have included the use of soft landing systems such as an air bag or cushion, which would have ensured no significant injury could result from a fall.”
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