11/06/2018

Learning lessons from the Bath tipper truck health & safety failings

Good health & safety management and vehicle maintenance should be easy

On Friday 27th January 2017, the owner of a haulage company and a mechanic were jailed after a 32-tonne truck with faulty brakes killed four people. The business owner and one of his staff with responsibility for vehicle maintenance were sentenced to a total of 12 years and 9 months in prison.

In his prosecution case, QC Adam Vaitilingam described the business as “a shambles from start to finish”.

Clearly there is no excuse for such poor business behavior. The fact that the two individuals were each found guilty of 4 counts of manslaughter highlights just how negligent their behavior was deemed to be. Arguably no amount of available support and advice would have kept the victims of this tragedy safe, such was the lack of care shown. But for most small to medium sized businesses there really is no excuse not to take the essential steps necessary to protect staff, members of the public and the reputation of the business itself.

With the development of web-based systems, there has been a significant development in the availability of simple, easy to access, online services and support when it comes to health and safety and vehicle/equipment maintenance. The Health & Safety Executive http://www.hse.gov.uk/ has heaps of information available to help business owners and managers. BusinessBlocs was created out of a desire to make such activities really straightforward for business owners. Find below links to 3 x essential tools:

  1. Method Statements and Health & Safety Risk Assessments
  2. Vehicle service reminder tool

For further reading on this topic check out:

http://www.hse.gov.uk/

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-38774080

https://www.dwf.law/news-events/legal-updates/2014/09/case-studies-custodial-sentences-for-health-and-safety-breaches/