"Excessive" Mick George fine is slashed on appeal

Chris Tindall
June 4, 2019

Mick George has had a £566,670 fine for breaching health and safety regulations reduced after the appeal court found it was manifestly excessive.

The company pleaded guilty to a breach of regulation 25(3) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 after a tipper vehicle struck an overhead power line (OPL). The driver was emptying a load of soil at a site in Northampton in 2016 when he pulled forward with the body raised and it touched, or came close to touching, the 33kV line.

The tipper vehicle suffered minor damage but the driver was unhurt.

Mick George had already identified the need for permanent protection structures, but after an initial delay only one was installed.

An HSE investigation showed that Mick George should have assessed the risks from OPLs more rigorously and realised its system of work was inadequate.

However, an appeal court hearing agreed with the appellant that the judge should have concluded that it was a harm Category 3 case, not harm Category 2 case, and that the starting point was manifestly excessive. An appeal court spokesman confirmed that as a result, the original fine was reduced to £334,000, to be paid within 12 months.

The HSE said that every year two people are killed and many more injured when mechanical plant and machinery comes into contact or close proximity with OPLs.

The firm declined to comment.

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About the Author

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Chris Tindall

Chris Tindall started writing for the haulage and logistics industry in 2002 and quickly realised there was enough going on to keep him busy for a very long time. He’s covered a broad range of significant issues, including GPS jamming by criminals, platooning, Brexit and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the lack of safe and secure lorry parks and he helped secure the release of a lorry driver in a Polish jail due to misuse of the European Arrest Warrant.

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