Bin Lorry had no man on back to signal for caution…
Bassetlaw District Council has been fined after a 76-year-old member of the public died after being hit by a reversing bin lorry.
The accident victim had been returning home on his mobility scooter when the accident occurred on 10 July 2008.
Nottingham Crown Court heard that the lorry only had a one-man crew at the time of the accident, and the tragedy could easily have been averted if there had been a council employee working at the reverse of the vehicle.
The driver only became aware of some kind of problem when he noticed some shopping items on the road behind them. He decided to stop the lorry and investigate and noticed the older man was trapped underneath the vehicle and had suffered multiple injuries after coming into collision with it. The man was transported to local hospital immediately but died of his injuries later that night.
HSE inspector David Butter spoke after the hearing:
“If the council had staffed the refuse collection lorry appropriately then the accident victim would probably still be alive today. Very large vehicles such as this have a number of blind spots and it was impractical to expect a lone driver to reverse safely without the aid of a colleague walking behind to check the path was clear.
“These lorries are fitted with flashing lights and a reversing warning system but the council needed to take into consideration that system was not adequate and another worker should have been present and could have prevented this needless loss of life.”
The Council pleaded guilty breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. Today Nottingham Crown Court fined the council £25,000 and ordered it to pay costs of £12,987.
Driver safety and the safety of pedestrians in the areas around which vehicles commonly operate remain a key concern for the HSE as this area remains one of the most dangerous in terms of fatal injuries in the UK workplace.
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