Health and Safety Must Be a Priority Says Pictons in Case against David Watson Transport Ltd over Driver’s Death
David Watson Transport Ltd, a Norfolk based road transport company with six depots around the UK, has been fined £230,000 in a court case following the death of one of its employees, Keith Brookes from Milton Keynes, who fell from an unsecured ladder while unloading items from his lorry at the Herts Golf and Country Club in 2012.
“Companies should always ensure that health and safety procedures are a priority” says Deborah Saini, a Personal Injury specialist at award winning leading regional law firm Pictons.
“This is a shocking and tragic case about an accident that would not have happened had the company put the necessary protective and responsible procedures in place. Mr Brookes’ death would have been devastating for his family and no compensation or fines can heal the wounds of the loss of a loved one.”
David Watson Transport Ltd was sentenced for safety failings after Mr Brookes, the lorry’s driver, suffered life-changing injuries from which he died two years later. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigated the case and found that the company had failed to properly safeguard its workers from falls. A prosecution against David Watson Transport Ltd followed and they were fined a total of £150,000 and ordered to pay costs of £88,030 after being found guilty to three counts of the Work at Height Regulations 2005.
HSE inspector Sandra Dias said: “This fall was entirely preventable and resulted in an employee being left in a permanent vegetative state owing to a traumatic brain injury from which he sadly he died two years later.
“The risk of falling from height during unloading lorries is well known across the industry. There is absolutely no excuse for companies to neglect safety. David Watson Transport Ltd’s failure to adequately plan working at height and provide adequate supervision resulted in horrific injuries from which Mr Brookes never recovered.”
David Watson Transport has a fleet of nearly 100 vehicles and employs approximately 120 staff. The business reported revenues of £13.4m in the year ending 30 November 2014.