Stephen Uttley was successful in the Prosecution of PD Teesport Limited who faced one offence contravening Section 3(1) of The Health and Safety at Work etc. 1974 in that they failed to ensure as far as reasonably practicable the safety of persons not in their employment whilst they were loading steel pipes into the hold of a vessel which resulted in the death of one of the workers.
Mr Uttley was instructed by Hay and Kilner Solicitors Newcastle upon Tyne on behalf of the HSE and advised on the criminal proceedings from the outset. The Prosecution was as a result of an investigation by HSE following an accident at on 9 September 2012 at Hartlepool dock which resulted in a fatality. Although PD Teesport had pleaded guilty, the Prosecution did not accept their Basis of Plea and a four day Newton Hearing took place at Teesside Crown Court.
Mr Uttley successfully argued that they had failed to provide a means of collective fall arrest during the intermediate phases of the half-stow loading operation and thereafter at a greater height. In addition that the breach was causative of the workers death and that their risk assessment did not consider or follow the work at height hierarchy as laid out in Regulation 6 of the Work at Height Regulations 2005.
The Company were fined £400,000 for the offence and ordered to pay the Prosecution costs. The case attracted local and national media attention.
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