12 September 2007
Firms fined over paralysed worker
Two construction companies have been fined following an incident which resulted in a worker being paralysed.
The accident occurred in March 2004 when labourer Chris Feeley was driving a dumper truck on a construction site.
After the front wheels of his vehicle has slipped into a small trench, a fellow worker attempted to pull it out using the bucket of a mini excavator.
Unfortunately for Mr Feeley, however, the bucket slid down and hit him in the back, causing damage to his spinal cord and vertebrae.
Rokbuild and Exeter Business were fined a combined total exceeding £200,000 for serious breaches in health and safety regulations.
Speaking after the hearing health and safety representative Richard Boland said: "The judge felt that Rokbuild's failings were the principle causes of this incident."
If the firm had properly assessed the competence of their sub-contractor and had arranged for the necessary supervision, the accident would not have occurred, he added.
Another incident involving a dumper truck recently resulted in a Salisbury-based construction company being fined.