Company fined £1 million after worker killed in accident

News Article

A refuge collection company has been fined £1 million pound by Canterbury Crown Court after a worker was run over and killed in an accident at a waste transfer station in Folkestone.

The court heard how Veolia ES (UK) Limited’s employee Mr John Head suffered fatal injuries when he was run over by a reversing refuse collection vehicle whilst walking across the yard, at the Ross Depot Waste Transfer Station in Folkestone. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the incident found that multiple vehicles, including RCV’s and articulated lorries were manoeuvring around the yard with no specific controls in place.

The company were found to have failed to adequately assess the risks involved in the yard and had not implemented any industry recognised measures to protect employees from harm.

London based Veolia ES (UK) Limited were found guilty after trial of breaching section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company were fined £1 million and ordered to pay costs of £130,000.

The HSE inspector Kevin Golding said: “This should be a reminder to all industries, but in particular, the waste industry, to appropriately assess the risks and implement widely recognised control measures to adequately control manoeuvring vehicles, in particular reversing vehicles and restrict pedestrian movements around vehicles.”

Jeremy Sirrell a Partner at Palmers and health and safety expert said: “This tragic accident could have easily been avoided had the required health and safety measures been put in place. If you are unsure about the safety measures your business is required to have in place it is important that you seek specialist advice at the earliest opportunity.”

For help and advice on all aspects of health and safety law including putting in place strategies to protect your workforce, please contact us today.