A firm has been severely reported against by a judicial bench as a man died after falling from a crane owned by it. This kind of accident at work is quite common these days and sufficient precautionary measures should be taken to prevent them.
Jonathan Cloke, a married man and crane driver was working at a construction site when the accident occurred. The exact location of the site is Thessaly Road, Battersea, situated in the south western part of London. The man succumbed due to multiple internal and external head injuries.
The accident also led to another death as Michael Alexa, a bus driver by profession was working close to the site and was hit directly by the impact of the crane. The duration of the court proceedings lasted for six days and finished on Monday, 12th March. The entire situation was discussed in detail during the court proceedings. The crane was not in good condition, leading to a preventable work accident claiming the lives of two people.
Overloading was one of the primary factors which caused the accident as counterweights amounting to 12.2 tonnes were used. The concrete rule is to use 8 counterweights which was ignored. The crane bolts were also not in proper position and the workers did not even investigate it properly. After the inspection it was found that the machine was already out of action on a temporary basis. Among the 24 bolts, four were not in shape and 10 completely damaged. As per the analysis of the researchers in the laboratory, the counterweights had placed enough stress on the bolts which led to the mishap. Only the previous year, the Royal Prosecution Service came out with the decision of not pressing criminal charges against the owners of the machine, Falcon Cranes. As per the admission of the managing director of the company, they did not take any initiative in finding out what caused the failure of the bolts.
In an interview about the accident with police, the managing director Mr. Douglas Genge confided that he hoped the service department of the firm inspected the reason behind the non performing bolts.
Coroner Shirley Radcliffe reported to the jury that a decision of unlawful killing cannot be reached, but death due to accident or a narrative verdict may be the answer. As per the narrative verdict, the men were killed as the crane fell on them. Overloading was the root cause of the accident and the usage of the wrong manual played a key role in it. The family members of the deceased were not happy with the verdict and the work accident lawyerworking in the case is planning a judicial review.
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