Crane Firm fined for breaches to Health and Safety at Work Act

Falcon Crane Hire Ltd has been sentenced for failings that led to the death of two men as a crane collapsed in London.

Southwark Crown Court heard how sections of the tower crane, which was on a housing development in Thessaly Road, Battersea, separated when 24 bolts failed due to metal fatigue. When the bolts failed the slew turret and jib separated from the mast and fell to the ground.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation into the incident, in September 2006, found Falcon Crane Hire Ltd did not investigate a similar incident which happened nine weeks before, when the bolts failed on the same crane and had to be replaced.

HSE found the company had an inadequate system to manage the inspection and maintenance of their fleet of cranes. Their process to investigate the underlying cause of components’ failings was also inadequate. It told the court the particular bolts were a safety critical part of the crane. The court also heard the bolts failing previously was an exceptional and significant occurrence, which should have been recognised by Falcon Crane Hire.

Mike Wilcock, HSE Head of Operations, said:

“The company fell far short of its health and safety obligation.”

Falcon Crane Hire Ltd were fined £750,000 and ordered to pay costs of £100,000 for breaching Sections 2 and 3 of the Health and Safety at Work Act.

Contact our Personal Injury Team today at Ringrose Law where we can advise you if you have a claim. Where an employer fails to comply with their duty to keep their employees safe and breaches the Health and Safety at Work Act, we are very proud to be able to help workers get the compensation they deserve.

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