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Thu December 07 2023

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National Grid fined £334,000 after crane operator killed

12 Jun 19 National Grid has been fined more than a third of a million pounds after the death of a loader crane operator.

The crane in question
The crane in question

Paul Marsden, a 57-year-old substation employee of National Grid Electricity Transmission in East Claydon, was killed when trying to move a delivery crate containing a compressor.

Aylesbury Crown Court heard how, on 18th November 2016, Paul Marsden was using a remote-controlled lorry loader crane. As he and a colleague attempted to attach the slings to the hook, he was struck by the crane, resulting in fatal injuries.

An investigation by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) found that National Grid Electricity Transmission had failed to ensure the lift was properly planned, effectively supervised and carried out safely. The company also failed to ensure Mr Marsden had received adequate training in operating the Palfinger crane or the remote-control panel.

National Grid Electricity Transmission of The Strand, London, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and Regulation 8(1) of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER). It was fined £334,000 and ordered to pay costs of £17,673.34 costs, as well as an additional victim surcharge of £170.

HSE inspector Stephen Faulkner said after the sentencing: “This tragic incident could have been avoided if the company had properly planned the movement of the crate involved. Employers must recognise operating remote-controlled plants carry their own risks and should be managed appropriately, including through providing adequate training for employees.”

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