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26/04/2017

Company Prosecuted After Worker Dies During Construction Work

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A construction company has been fined after an employee was killed during work to install drainage boxes at a primary school in West Sussex.

Hague Construction Limited of Sir Thomas Longley Road, Rochester, Kent pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Etc Act 1974. It was fined £100,000 with £16,918 in costs.

Lewes Crown Court heard how Daniel Clifford Yeowell was employed by Hague as a ground worker. He was working alongside colleagues to build and install drainage boxes at a site at Langley Green Primary School, Crawley on 04 October 2013.

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However, Mr Yeowell was struck by a concrete drainage cover as he was standing in the excavation area. He later died as a result of severe head injuries.

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that Hague failed to properly plan this lifting operation and also failed to supply workers with the safe and appropriate equipment to carry the work. In addition, it was found the lifting chains being used were too long for the work and were not attached safely to the cover or the excavator.

HSE inspector Andrew Cousins said: "Our investigation was prompted in the most tragic of circumstances. Hague Construction should have properly planned the lifting operation regarding this work activity. If the company had done so Mr Yeowell's death could have been avoided."

(LM/MH)

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