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Fri February 26 2021

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Balfour Beatty fined £600k for Third Don Crossing fatality

26 Feb 19 Balfour Beatty has been fined £600,000 after an employee was killed when struck by a wheeled excavator on Aberdeen’s Third Don Crossing project.

On 13th January 2016, 58-year-old Ian Walker, a Balfour Beatty employee, was killed by a 14-tonne wheeled excavator slewing round after being refuelled.

Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard that between 4th and 13th January 2016 Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Ltd, being a principal contractor, failed to ensure that the planned safe system of work for refuelling plant was properly implemented at the construction site of the Third Don Crossing.

An investigation by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) found that refuelling of plant and equipment was identified as a high risk activity by the principal contractor; it had created a task briefing document detailing a safe system of work and had risk assessed the activity. However, although these procedures existed in documents, it was evident that they were not fully implemented on site.

Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Limited of Churchill Place, Canary Wharf, London, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 13(1) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. It was fined £600,000.

HSE principal inspector Niall Miller said after the hearing: “This was a tragic and wholly avoidable incident, caused by the failure of the civil engineering company to implement safe systems of work, and to ensure that health and safety documentation was communicated and control measures followed.”

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