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Firm awaits sentence after fatality

PUBLISHED: 15:17 05 December 2001 | UPDATED: 10:58 03 March 2010

A SUFFOLK businessman has admitted his company was in breach of health and safety regulations when a fork lift truck operator was killed at work.

Howard Holland was killed when he was crushed in an accident at Jacksons Fork Trucks, on Norwich Road, Barham in November 1999.

By Matt Eley

A SUFFOLK businessman has admitted his company was in breach of health and safety regulations when a fork lift truck operator was killed at work.

Howard Holland was killed when he was crushed in an accident at Jacksons Fork Trucks, on Norwich Road, Barham in November 1999.

Derek Curry, managing director of Reeves & Wright (Anglia) Limited, Jacksons' parent company based in Princes Street, Ipswich, appeared at South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court.

On behalf of the company he entered guilty pleas to four breaches of health and safety regulations at work.

Geoffrey Knipe, prosecuting for the Health and Safety Executive, outlined the case to the court.

He explained how 59-year-old Stowmarket man Mr Holland was killed when an attempt to move a fork lift truck off a lorry went tragically wrong.

The truck was suspended in mid-air by another fork-lift truck when "for reasons that will never be known" Mr Holland entered the cab of the vehicle.

It toppled over and fell to the floor, crushing Mr Holland. He died almost instantly from the injuries he sustained.

The court heard that the truck weighed 5.36 tonnes, which was heavier than the five tonne limit the other truck was supposed to carry. Stickers displaying the weight of the vehicle had not been displayed.

The company also pleaded guilty to failing to properly plan or supervise the movement of the truck.

Mr Knipe said: "Mr Holland died as a result of the accident, the prosecution accepts he should not have climbed in to the truck, it is unlikely to have occurred had it been properly supervised and planned."

Richard Kelly, on behalf of Reeves & Wright, said the reason why the accident occurred was because of Mr Holland's actions and not as a result of the company failing to meet health and safety requirements.

Magistrates declined jurisdiction of the case and instead committed it to the Crown Court for sentencing at a date to be arranged.


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