Firm fined over death of dad-of-three crushed at work in Sheffield

Sheffield Crown Court
Sheffield Crown Court

A firm has been fined £75,000 over the death of a dad-of-three who was crushed while working in Sheffield.

Darren Richardson, aged 42, was crushed to death between two vehicles on a building site on Clay Wheels Lane, Wadsley, on December 15, 2014.

He was working at the Ballast Phoenix processing and aggregate plant when tragedy struck.

Mr Richardson, from Ripley, Derbyshire, who was working for RMB Contractors at the time, was clearing a trench when he became trapped between an excavator and digger.

RMB Contractors Ltd, of Ripley Road, Belper, Derbyshire, pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act during a hearing at Sheffield Crown Court.

In addition to the fine, the firm was ordered to pay costs of £24,482.80.

The excavator was moving backwards at the time of the incident.

Inspector Medani Close, from the Health and Safety Executive, said: "Back to back plant activities should be avoided as both pedestrians and vehicles could be put at a higher risk of coming into contact with each other.

"If the two separate work activities cannot be avoided, then the area should be safeguarded and effectively managed with segregation in place, for example using fencing or barriers to delineate the ‘no go’ areas for pedestrians."