International energy supplier National Grid has been fined by the UK’s Crown Court following the death of sub-station worker using a loader crane.
Following an investigation by UK government workplace health, safety and welfare agency Health and Safety Executive (HSE), National Grid Electricity Transmission pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and Regulation 8(1) of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER). The company was fined £334,000 and ordered to pay costs of £17,673.34 costs, as well as an additional victim surcharge of £170.
The investigation found that National Grid failed to ensure the lift was properly planned, effectively supervised and carried out safely. The company also failed to ensure the worker, Paul Marsden, had received adequate training in the new lorry loader crane, in particular the additional risks due to the remote control unit. Paul Marsden was attempting to attach the slings of a crate to the crane’s hook when he was struck by the crane.
Commenting after the court case HSE inspector Stephen Faulkner said, “This tragic incident could have been avoided if the company had properly planned the movement of the crate involved. Employers must recognise operating remote-controlled plants carry their own risks and should be managed appropriately, including through providing adequate training for employees.
“Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”