Kirkby Sonae factory deaths due to safety failures
Published: 23rd Jul 2013 21:10:38
The deaths of two engineers dragged into machinery at a Merseyside factory were caused by a failure to follow procedures, an inquest has found.
James Bibby and Thomas Elmer died after being dragged into a conveyor belt at the Sonae chipboard factory in Kirkby in December 2010.
An inquest jury found there was a lack of training in how to use the equipment.
The Health and Safety Executive said it would consider criminal charges.
In a narrative verdict the jury said the two sub-contractors from Rossendale, Lancashire, had not been shown how to isolate the conveyor belt from the power supply.
They were carrying out repairs when the conveyor belt started up and they were dragged into the machinery, the inquest at Bootle Town Hall heard.
The jury was told the conveyor belt was triggered automatically as factory machinery started to dump wood chips into a silo.
A post-mortem examination found both men died from multiple injuries.
The jury said: "It is our view that the death of each man was the result of a failure to adopt appropriate procedures."
The site, which opened in 2000, was badly damaged by a large fire in August 2011 in which a demolition worker - James Dennis Kay, 62, from Heywood, Greater Manchester - died.
About 10,000 people living near the site are bidding for compensation, arguing fumes from the blaze affected their health.
The plant was affected by a second fire in January 2012 and it closed in September with the loss of 220 jobs.
A Health and Safety Executive spokesman said: "We are carrying out a thorough investigation into the deaths of James Bibby and Thomas Elmer and will now carefully consider the inquest's findings before deciding whether it is appropriate to bring criminal charges."
A spokesman for Sonae said: "Sonae had a permit to work system in place, which had it been followed would have prevented the tragic accident.
"It will be of little consolation but our thoughts remain with the families of Thomas Elmer and James Bibby."
At 06:08:46 in HeadlinesThe EU budget row that left David Cameron red-faced with anger, according to the Guardian, is Saturday's lead story for most papers.
At 05:38:50 in HeadlinesA US judge has sentenced an ex-Colombian rebel to 27 years in prison for his role in the kidnapping of three American contract workers in 2003.
At 04:22:45 in EnglandA report into the route of the second phase of the controversial fast train project HS2 is expected to recommend a new station be built in Crewe.
At 03:20:13 in HeadlinesThe beautiful, baffling seasonal spectacular is back for another year: starlings, swirling in their hundreds and thousands, in shapes that defy mathematical description.
At 03:07:29 in EntertainmentPaul Merton is a Bafta award-winning presenter, writer, actor and comedian, known for his improvisation skills and deadpan humour.
At 03:04:15 in EnglandA 28-year-old mixing desk used by BBC Essex is to be stored at the Science Museum in London as part of a move to help preserve a bygone era of radio.
At 02:57:39 in EnglandA BBC News article exploring the fate of England's lost football grounds last week drew an overwhelming response from readers and on social media. Here we look at some of the other clubs whose former stadiums are gone but certainly not forgotten.
At 02:56:09 in HeadlinesAn Argentine ex-police chief and ex-interior minister have both been given life sentences for running a detention and torture centre in the 1970s.
At 02:33:03 in EnglandA novel by British-born author Malcolm Lowry is being published 70 years after its manuscript was thought to have been destroyed in a fire.
At 02:13:37 in WorldThe sacking of Pakistani Taliban (TTP) spokesman Shahidullah Shahid for supporting Islamic State is the latest sign of divisions in an already fragmented militant movement. Over the years Pakistan's insurgents have spawned a bewildering array of splinter groups and factions, reports M Ilyas Khan.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2013. Kirkby Sonae factory deaths due to safety failures [Online] (Updated 23rd Jul 2013)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1497447/Kirkby-Sonae-factory-deaths-due-to-safety-failures [Accessed 25th Oct 2014]
News In Other Categories
Scientists from Harvard Medical School have discovered a way of turning stem cells into killing machines to fight brain cancer.
The FA Cup is returning to the BBC this season, and we'll guide you all the way to Wembley on television, radio and online.
A report into the route of the second phase of the controversial fast train project HS2 is expected to recommend a new station be built in Crewe.
With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
A Cardiff deputy head teacher who was jailed for secretly filming pupils going to the toilet is set to appeal against the length of his sentence.
Johann Lamont is to stand down as leader of the Scottish Labour Party after accusing some of her colleagues of trying to run Scotland "like a branch office of London."