The company PCR Steel has been fined this February after a driver was fatally injured by steelwork, which fell from a telehandler forklift truck during loading.
The incident dates back to April 2019. The driver was performing an unplanned lifting operation, loading a metal balcony base frame onto a flatbed trailer, when the incident occurred. The load was not secured and the balcony frame weighing approximately 400kg fell and crushed the 47-year-old man, who had been standing on the back of the trailer bed.
Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigators found the company failed to ensure that the lifting operation was properly planned by a competent person, appropriately supervised, and carried out in a safe manner. There was no lift plan for the manoeuvring of balcony frames that could have considered the load’s security, size and weight. There was no plan for how the load would be set down, nor for how to exclude people from the danger zone.
The company was fined £50,000 and ordered to pay costs of £9,900 after pleading guilty to breaching regulation 8(1) of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations and section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act.
According to HSE Inspector Jill Mead, 'This was a tragic and wholly avoidable incident, caused by the failure of the host company to implement safe systems of work. Those in control of work have a responsibility to devise safe methods of working and to provide the necessary information, instruction and training to their workers in the safe system of working.'