Civils contractor fined £700,000 after employee crushed by dumper truck

Civil engineering firm BAM Nuttall has been fined £700,000 after an employee was run over by a six-tonne dumper truck.

On 28 October 2016, John Cameron was changing over a blade on a piece of work equipment at the side of a roadway near a substation which was under construction.

A safe system of work to segregate people from vehicles was not in place, and the dumper struck John. He sustained injuries to his pelvis and subsequently died.

Inverness Sheriff Court was told that BAM failed to adequately assess the risks to its employees whilst they were repairing and replacing equipment. The civils contractor failed to provide a system of work in relation to this task which defined a place or places where such work could be carried out safely and which segregated people from vehicles, the Health and Safety Executive said.

BAM pleaded guilty to breaching sections 2 and 33(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act over the incident, which happened at Blackhillock Substation in Keith, north east Scotland. It was fined £700,000.

HSE inspector Penny Falconer said John’s death could easily have been prevented if the construction giant had acted to identify and manage the risks involved, and to put a safe system of work in place.

BAM, which reported a turnover of £844 million for 2020, is classed as a ‘very large’ organisation under the sentencing guidelines for safety and health offences.

In 2019, the construction firm was fined £833,333 after a polystyrene block hit a worker on the head.

The year before, a subcontractor fell around three metres through a suspended ceiling into a waiting room at East Croydon railway station. The company was ordered to pay £900,000.