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Company Fined After Worker Is Killed By Falling Steel Beam

Expert Calls For Employers To Learn Lessons From Case


Crane supplier JH Carruthers Ltd has been fined £180,000 after pleading guilty to safety breaches related to an incident in which a Scottish worker was killed after being struck by a falling object.

Motherwell man Colin Dickson died when the suspension points on a steel beam he was under failed as he worked at the Lakeside Energy from Waste installation in Berkshire, falling five metres onto him and leaving him with fatal injuries to his chest and fractures to his legs and back.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive into the incident in August 2007 revealed that the lifting operation being undertaken on the site was not planned, appropriately supervised or done in a safe manner from the outset.

Irwin Mitchell represents people who have suffered serious injuries in major accidents at work across the UK, as well as the families of victims who have been killed in such incidents.

Elaine Russell, a Partner and specialist in workplace injury claims at Irwin Mitchell’s Glasgow office, said: “We have seen on numerous occasions the terrible consequences which can emerge when employers fail to ensure that work is properly risk assessed and supervised.

“Health and safety needs to be treated as a fundamental priority by businesses and every effort should be taken to ensure any work related to objects which are elevated is planned and organised safely.

“This is a shocking case and it can only be hoped that employers can learn lessons from this which will ensure the same mistakes which led to the avoidable death of this man can be prevented in the future.”