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Case
Case No:00176
Year:2007
Ref. No:
Linked Cases:
Keywords:Health and safety - Fatal accident - Factory - Fine.
Offences
Offence(s) Charged:Count 01: Failing to provide adequate information, instruction, training and supervision contrary to sections 48 and 49 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989.
Count 02: Failing to prepare a risk assessment contrary to section 48 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989.
Count 03: Failing to decide on protective measures contrary to section 48 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989.
Count 04: Breach of duty resulting in the death of an employee contrary to sections 48 and 49 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989.
Count 05: Breach of duty resulting in the death of an employee contrary to sections 48 and 49 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989.
Offence(s) Taken into Consideration:Remaining counts taken into consideration (no plea entered).
Ancillary/Consequential Orders Made:
Date Of Offence:22/08/2005
Comments on Offence dates:
Location Of Offence: Factory premises.
Brief Description Of Offence(s):The accused company is involved in the production of pre-cast concrete. The deceased and his brother, both foreign nationals, sought employment at the factory. Both were instructed to return the next day wherein they were given training and instruction on the use of a particular machine. The training and instruction was given by a foreign national from another country who did not have fluent English. Neither the deceased nor his brother had fluent English. As a result of the language difficulties neither the deceased nor his brother fully understood the training or operation of the machine. The machine they were instructed to operate was involved in the production of pre-cast concrete slabs. Both men operated the machine on the Friday without incident but at 1.20 p.m. on the Monday the deceased placed his head inside the machine and two concrete moulds inverted and fell on his head causing him fatal injuries. A safety pin should have been inserted to stop the concrete moulds from rotating. It had not been inserted. Insertion of a safety pin and the carrying of a single mould was the best system to operate in using the machine. It appeared that the necessity to use the safety pin had not been communicated to the deceased or others operating the machine due to the language barrier. Evidence was given that since the incident the accused company had engaged an outside body to direct it in health and safety. It had engaged translators to ensure that all manuals were translated into the native language of all its employees.
Sentencing Comments:This horrendous accident had resulted in death. There had been a complete failure of training of the employee. This failure led to his death. The court was impressed with the steps taken by the accused company since the incident. Consultants were employed on an on-going basis. All health and safety literature was translated into the language of the employee. This was to the accused’s company’s credit. The court noted that the company had no previous convictions, its treatment of the family after the incident and the assistance given to the deceased’s brother. This was a well run company and this death had a profound effect on the running of the company. The court was impressed by the significant steps taken in the aftermath of the incident.
OffenderDetails
Gender:N/A
Age At Date Of Offence:
Drug Status:
Age At Date Of Sentence:
Nationality:Company.
Previous ConvictionsNo

Custodial :No
Previous Custodial Sentence(s):
Other Personal Information: The accused company had no previous convictions and was a company with an otherwise good health and safety record. After the incident the accused company had arranged all funeral arrangements both in Ireland and in the deceased's home country and arranged for relatives to accompany the body back to the deceased's home country. The accused company had also secured alternative employment for the deceased’s brother. Since the incident the company has engaged outside contractors to advise it on health and safety. It carried out a complete review of all training. Training is now updated regularly and each employee is retrained every 3 months. All operating manuals are in the language of its foreign national employees. Interpreters are employed to ensure that all employees understand the training. Since the incident the company has reduced production and has no plans to expand. It had employed 22 persons with an operating profit of €1,000,000. It now has 19 employees and a profit of €800,000. It was not a case of the company seeking to maximise profits by asking persons to work in a risky manner.
On Bail At Date Of Offence: No

Offender's Role In Offence:Allowed injured party to operate dangerous machine without adequate training.
Degree Of Co-operation With Investigation:Fully cooperated and assisted with the HSA investigation.
Sentence Imposed On Co-Accused
Date Of Sentence:
Victims
Number Of Victims:1
NationalityPolish.
Age Of Victim 33
Gender Of Victim:M
Victim ImpactThe man died at scene. He suffered severe cranial injuries as a result of the pre-cast concrete mould falling on his head.

Appeal
Date Of Appeal
Court Decision
Type Of Appeal:
Variation On Appeal
Date Of Appeal Decision:
Appeal Decision:
WeaponsDrugs
Weapon Used In Committing Offence:
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Value Of Any Drugs Involved:
Value/Nature Of Any Property Stolen
Comments
Researcher’s Comments
Sentences
Case No Date Of Sentence Offence Sentenced Plea Sentence Age
2007/00176 16/07/2007 Count 01: Failing to provide adequate information, instruction, training and supervision contrary to sections 48 and 49 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989. Guilty Fine-->
€25,000 payable within 3 months. Distress in default of payment.
2007/00176 16/07/2007 Count 04: Breach of duty resulting in the death of an employee contrary to sections 48 and 49 of the Safety Health and Welfare at Work Act 1989. Guilty Fine-->
€1,000 payable within 3 months.