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Farmer Fined After Driver Killed

HGV Driver Electrocuted On Farmer's Premises


A farmer has been fined under Health and Safety law after a delivery driver was tragically electrocuted by an overhead power cable at his premises in Salisbury.

Self-employed HGV driver Nigel Fox was delivering cattle feed to Chestnut Tree Farm in Sutton Mandeville in 2012 when the tipper body of his lorry hit an overheard power line by the farm's feed silo.

His body was discovered by an electricity supply engineer who had been sent out to locate the line fault.

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that Tony Slade, who owns the farm, had made no attempt to reduce the serious risk posed by the live cable crossing the yard, or to provide signs warning people it was there.

He was fined £20k and ordered to pay £5,609 in costs at Salisbury Magistrates' Court.

"Overhead power lines are dangerous, particularly where they cross traffic routes or frequently used work areas," said HSE Inspector Andy Shaw. 

"Those in control of work premises, whether they are employers or self-employed, need to identify the risks to people working at or visiting their premises."

Expert Opinion
This shocking and tragic incident indicates the importance of complying with health and safety regulations. This accident at work could easily have been avoided if appropriate measures had been taken to assess risks posed to workers and contractors and action taken to prevent serious incidents.

“We have represented a number of clients who have been injured at work as a result of poor health and safety standards and it is vital these are improved across the board, but particularly in the farming industry, which is one of the most dangerous sectors for workers.

“Hopefully, this successful HSE prosecution will reiterate to employers and business owners the importance of complying with health and safety rules designed to keep employees safe while at work.”
Colin Ettinger, Partner

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