Improved working conditions pledge
IPSWICH-based Jackson Civil Engineering said today that the death of a construction worker would result in improved safety conditions. Neville Cook, 34, of Lowestoft, was crushed between a concrete pipe and a 21-tonne excavator as he laid sewage pipes in November 2000.
IPSWICH-based Jackson Civil Engineering said today that the death of a construction worker would result in improved safety conditions.
Neville Cook, 34, of Lowestoft, was crushed between a concrete pipe and a 21-tonne excavator as he laid sewage pipes in November 2000. He lost both his legs in the accident and died 10 days later in Norfolk and Norwich Hospital.
The father-of-two was working at the construction site in Lowestoft for Christopher Nicholson, a sub-contractor for Ipswich-based firm Jackson Civil Engineering.
Yesterday the company was fined £30,000 at Chelmsford Crown Court after admitting it had failed to ensure a safe working area.
Mr Nicholson, 58, of High Road, Needham, near Diss, was also fined £7,500 after pleading guilty to failing to ensure the safety of his employees.
In a statement, Richard Neall , managing director of Jackson Civil Engineering, said: "The tragic nature of this accident is first and foremost in our minds. Clearly our thoughts and condolences are with Neville Cook's family.
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"As a company, we are committed to providing a safe environment for all those who work on our construction sites. Over many years we have worked closely with the Health and Safety Executive to minimise accidents and to continually improve how we manage our sites.
"The consequences of this approach can be seen in the excellent record over the last 50 years. "However, very sadly in this case, all our efforts were not enough. We will learn from this incident and have already put additional measures in place to try to ensure that it does not happen again. While we believe our systems are already industry leading, we will continue to work with the HSE to seek other areas where we can tighten our processes."
In court, Sam Mainds, prosecuting for the Health and Safety Executive, said Mr Cook had been working on a £1.9 million contract to install new sewage pipes beneath the Birds Eye Ness Point car park.
Mr Mainds claimed the firm had not reacted sufficiently to a fatal accident in Milton Keynes just seven months earlier, when a worker had died in "almost identical" circumstances.
But James Ageros, mitigating for Jackson Civil Engineering, said the disaster was "an isolated event" which resulted in the company's first prosecution in 50 years.
"This was in no way an accident waiting to happen," he said.