April 30, 2018

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in court

Dumper fell on to worker

A building firm has sentenced after an untrained operator was injured when a six-tonne dumper fell on top of him.

Brighton Magistrates’ Court heard how, on 16 June 2017, operator Daniel Robbins was operating a dumper for Chalmers and Co (Sussex) Limited at Great Bainden Farm, tipping material from excavation work alongside a barn at the top of an embankment.

As the operator came around the corner of the barn to tip a load, the dumper became stuck. When he backed up slightly to gain traction, the dumper tipped over the edge of the embankment. Daniel Robbins tried to jump clear, but the dumper landed upside down on top of him at the bottom of the embankment, trapping him and causing fractures to his right thigh, hip socket and vertebrae.

Investigating, the HSE found the company had failed to:

  • provide the operator with appropriate training for operating a dumper
  • provide the site manager with suitable training for managing a site
  • ensure that those operating under him, were doing so safely.

Furthermore, no measures had been put into place to prevent dumpers from approaching or overrunning the edge of the embankment.

Chalmers and Co (Sussex) Limited of Prospect Farm, Brickhurst Lane, Laughton, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined £26,667 with costs of £3,659.

Inspector Stephen Green commented: “Those in control of work have a responsibility to devise safe methods of working and to provide the necessary information, instruction and training to their workers in the safe system of working.”

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3 years ago

My brother was badly hurt as a young man in 1973 in a very similar incident. On his first day on a construction site he was asked to move a dumper, although he had never driven one before was told if he wanted to come back to work the next day to do as he was told. Sadly due to his inexperience, wet weather and other conditions it flipped over landing on him and he suffered bad injuries. Luckily he lived to tell the tale but it is sad to read that such things are still happening today. At least… Read more »