Six-figure fine for powerline death

Chris Tindall
November 15, 2021

A South Wales restricted licence operator has been fined £160,000 after a worker was fatally electrocuted whilst operating a lorry mounted crane.

Cardiff Crown Court heard how the employee for ASL Access Scaffold, Martin Tilby, was killed when the crane he was operating struck an overhead powerline whilst he was attempting to unload materials in a field at Cowbridge, South Glamorgan in May 2016.

An investigation carried out by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found no risk assessment had been carried out in the field where the incident occurred and no control measures were put in place to prevent contact with overhead powerlines.

The company, which holds a licence for four HGVs and two trailers operating out of a base in Bridgend, was found guilty of breaching sections of the Health and Safety at Work Act and a LOLER regulation relating to the organisation of lifting operations.

It was fined £160,000 and ordered to pay costs of £45,000.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Damian Corbett said: “This death was easily preventable, and the risk should have been identified. 

“Employers should make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk from striking overhead powerlines.

“This death would have been preventable had an effective system for managing unloading materials been in place.”

About the Author


Chris Tindall

Chris Tindall started writing for the haulage and logistics industry in 2002 and has covered a broad range of significant issues, including GPS jamming by criminals, platooning and Brexit.

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