Farm Manager Killed In Forklift Accident

Lincolnshire Firm Fined £165,000 Following Fatal Workplace Accident


A company has been fined £165,000 after a farm manager was killed in an accident involving a forklift truck.

Lincolnshire Field Products of Spalding pleaded guilty to two breaches of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and was also ordered to pay costs of £39,500 during a recent hearing at Lincoln Crown Court.

Peter Barney, 58, died in October 2010 after he was struck by a lifting vehicle at Middle Farm on Mill Marsh Road in Moulton Seas End.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the company had failed to introduce sufficient measures to ensure pedestrians did not come into contact with moving transport.

Mr Barney - who had worked for the firm for 38 years - had left his car to walk over to a potato grading shed when the incident occurred.

He was crushed by the forklift truck as he walked across the yard and his injuries were so severe that he died on the scene.

The HSE confirmed that safety consultants had warned the company about vehicle/pedestrian segregation during an inspection in 2003. However, the organisation did not fully address the issue.
HSE inspector Neil Ward said the accident could have been avoided had Lincolnshire Field Products taken steps to keep its employees safe.

"Employees on foot were using the same doorway as the forklift truck, which meant there was a significant risk of them being struck," he commented.

"The company should have managed the yard so that people and vehicles were not sharing the same space. Sadly, Mr Barney lost his life because this simple procedure wasn't in place."

According to HSE statistics, the agricultural, fishing and forestry sector is one of the most dangerous in the UK, with 29 people being killed in occupational accidents in 2012-13.

Although just over one in 100 employees work in farming, the industry accounts for one-fifth of all fatal injuries reported across the country.

If you have lost a loved one due to an accident at work, our serious injury solicitors could help you claim compensation to help get the answers you deserve. Visit our fatal accident claims or accidents at work claims page for more information.