Veolia Fined After Worker Crushed To Death

HSE-logoVeolia Environmental Services Sheffield Ltd has been fined £750,000 after a worker was crushed to death beneath the tailgate of a refuse collection vehicle.

On May 17 last year (2015), Richard Calsen, 25, went into a cardiac arrest at welding firm John Fowler and Son at Abbey Mill near Chorley, Lancashire, after being crushed between the tailgate and the vehicle when safety mechanisms failed.

A Health and Safety Executive carried out a full investigation and found no adequate risk assessment had been undertaken for the work Mr Calsen was carrying out.

Mr Calsen had been welding plates onto the tailgate of the vehicle alongside William Fowler, the son of the business owner. Mr Fowler went to the cab to raise the tailgate a few inches, but turned the control the wrong way and the tailgate started to close.

Hydraulic props intended to prevent the tailgate from closing fully had not been secured into place and a safety limiting switch, which would ensure a one meter gap was left beneath the tailgate, was not working.

It emerged that Veolia Environmental Services Sheffield Ltd had failed to carry out routine inspections to its refuse collection vehicles and four other bin lorries in the fleet also had faulty safety limiting switches.

Veolia Environmental Services Sheffield Ltd admitted an offence under the Health and Safety at Work Act and was fined £750,000 at Preston Crown Court.

John Fowler and Son was also fined £65,000 after the court was told it had failed to undertake adequate risk assessments to protect its employees.

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