Blast managers cleared of health and safety breaches

Michael Whinfrey
Michael Whinfrey
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Three managers from a Rotherham recycling firm where a worker died in a blast have been cleared of health and safety breaches in court.

Sterecycle maintenance manager Kevin Goss, aged 58, of Dixon Road, Hillsborough; operations manager Steven Weaver, 39, of Orchard Croft, Wales, Rotherham and operations director Paul Greenwell, 52, of Bury St Edmonds in Suffolk, all denied health and safety breaches.

During their trial at Sheffield Crown Court, it was alleged maintenance failures, misuse of equipment, bypassing safety devices and inappropriate repairs contributed to the tragedy which killed worker Michael Whinfrey.

But yesterday a judge ordererd the jury to find the trio not guilty of the health and safety offences.

The firm, Sterecycle, remains on trial accused of corporate manslaughter, a charge which is denied.

Goss is also accused of perverting the course of justice and is still on trial in connection with that allegation.

The prosecution say an autoclave - a large vessel which used steam and pressure to break down rubbish at the Sheffield Road plant was faulty.

The company went into administration after the fatal blast killed the father of three from Wickersley.

The trial continues.