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21.05.2013

Three years for fatal accident

A UK company director Allan Turnbull has been sentenced to three years in prison following the death of a man who fell from a boom lift after it was struck by a beam dropped by a crane.

Kenneth Joyce, 53, was thrown from the platform he was working from when it was struck by a falling beam that had slipped from a crane. He fell over nine metres to the ground below and was then struck by another falling beam which landed on top of him. See earlier report

Turnbull, 61, the owner and director of A&H Boring and machining was contracted by North Eastern Marine Offshore Contracts (NEMOC) to dismantle the building even though he had little or no experience of taking down such a large structure.

Christopher Taylor, 52, one of two directors of NEMOC, was convicted of one count of consenting to, or conniving at, the failure to discharge duties under the Health & Safety Act and was fined £30,000 in total and ordered to pay £50,000 in costs.

Alison Norton, specialist prosecutor in the CPS Special Crime Division said: "Work in the shipyard was clearly dangerous and carried serious risks, but the real tragedy in this case is that had a safe system of work been put in place to appropriately manage these risks, Kenneth Joyce's death could have been avoided.”

"As his employer, Allan Turnbull failed to ensure Kenneth Joyce's safety at work, as did NEMOC and one of its directors, Christopher Taylor. These failures had terrible consequences and I hope today's sentences provide some comfort to the family of Kenneth Joyce, to whom I extend my deepest sympathies."

NEMOC was also found guilty of failing to discharge its duties, but because the company is now in liquidation it was fined £1 for each offence.

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