Firm Fined For Newmarket Man Death

7 July 2010, 10:23

A farming company has been fined £75,000 after a worker from Newmarket was crushed to death due to faulty equipment.

Sam Foley, who was 24, was using a tractor to tow manure to a field at Grange Farm in Snetterton, Norfolk, on the 8th July 2007.

He was dumping manure out of a tipper trailer when the drawbar broke and crashed forwards through the back of the tractor, crushing him in the cab.

He died at the scene.

A Health and Safety Executive investigation found the tipper trailer had not been adequately maintained and was not suitable for handling sold manure.

Timothy John Wyatt and Jonathan Pearn Wyatt, trading as Pearn Wyatt & Son and based at Grange Farm, Snetterton, Norfolk, appeared at Norwich Crown Court for sentencing yesterday.

They had admitted breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 at an earlier hearing.

HSE Inspector Malcolm Crowther said: "This sad death of a young man in his early 20s should never have happened.

Pearn Wyatt & Son did not carry out their legal duty to ensure the health and safety of their employees - and the result was this tragic death.

The trailer had not been maintained properly and was not suitable for transporting solid manure.

Farming is one of the country’s most dangerous industries with people often working on their own and in remote locations.

The HSE’s agriculture campaign, Make The Promise, calls on all farmers and agriculture workers to ‘make the promise’ to come home safe each night.

Making health and safety a priority before heading out each day is so important and takes a relatively small amount of time.

In this case, it was down to Pearn Wyatt & Son to ensure the equipment was maintained properly and safe for the farm workers to use – something the company did not do.

If more farmers and farming companies ‘make the promise’ then hopefully we can avoid repeating tragic incidents such as this one."

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