Lorry driver dies after accident involving forklift truck… A lorry driver was killed at an accident at a factory in Romney after he was crushed while another driver attempted to unload pallets from his lorry using a forklift truck.
The man, 27, from Tenbury Wells, was employed by a haulage company in Worcester and was delivering sheet steel to a lift manufacturer in Hampshire on 16 November 2007.
The subsequent Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation into the man’s death revealed that after he had parked the lorry, the forklift driver arrived to unload the delivery but during the process of unloading the lorry, one of the pallets, weighing one tonne, hit the victim on the chest and trapped him against the lorry causing him to suffer fatal crush injuries.
The HSE was critical of the lift manufacturer for failing to ensure driver safety as no adequate risk assessment had taken place nor were there necessary safety protocols in place to protect pedestrians from moving vehicles. Furthermore Winchester Crown Court heard that the HSE had previously warned the company about managing safety risks related to the use of vehicles in the workplace.
The mother of the victim described how the tragedy had affecter her saying:
“I can only describe losing Adam as like the devastation of an atom bomb – it has shattered so many lives. It has devastated Adam’s son, Luke, who is five. We all feel the fun has gone out of our lives.
“Although it is a blessing that we always did everything together as a family, it is also now a curse because there will always be a huge hole where Adam was.
“It was an incident that should never have happened and no other family should suffer like we have.”
HSE Inspector David Bibby commented after the case:
“This tragic case highlights the importance of proper planning for deliveries, particularly around the risks of moving forklift trucks.
“Had Wessex Lift Co Limited considered this, they would have identified safer methods for receiving deliveries, something which they implemented immediately after the incident.”
The company pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and was fined £65,000 in addition to having to pay costs of £60,000. “Health and Safety News” updates newsletter, click here. The new ‘Health and Safety News’ section on our web site is updated daily with new, up to the minute stories. The stories are also released via Twitter – why not follow us on Twitter? and receive new stories as and when they happen?