News - Construction News

Prosecution follows worker death

The HSE has prosecuted a civil engineering contractor following the death of an employee during a major construction project.

An employee of Balfour Beatty Group Employment Limited was fatally injured when he was struck on the body by a wheeled excavator at the Third Don Crossing in Aberdeen.

Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard that between 4th January 2016 and 13th January 2016 Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Limited, being a principal contractor, failed to ensure that the safe system of work for refuelling of all plant and equipment was fully implemented at the construction. As a consequence, the deceased who was working at the site was struck by a wheeled excavator which was slewing after being refuelled.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that refuelling of plant and equipment was identified as a high risk activity by the principal contractor who had created a task briefing document detailing a safe system of work and had risk assessed the said activity. However, it became evident that although these procedures existed in documentary format the safe system of work and its control measures had not been fully implemented at the construction site.

Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Limited of Churchill Place, Canary Wharf, London pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 13(1) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 and has been fined £600,000.

Speaking after the hearing HSE principal inspector, Niall Miller said: “This was a tragic and wholly avoidable incident, caused by the failure of the civil engineering company to implement safe systems of work, and to ensure that health and safety documentation was communicated and control measures followed.”

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