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Last Updated:  Friday, 28 March, 2003, 17:31 GMT
Men killed by overhead cable
Accident scence
The tragedy happened on a road in County Durham
Two road workers were killed after a telescopic tower light clipped an overhead power cable carrying 20,000 volts, an inquest heard.

The hearing was told how the ground was sparking and small fires alight when the two workers were discovered at the base of the metal, following the accident in January 2002.

The jury returned a verdict of accidental death on workers Frederick Cook, 38, and his 33-year-old colleague John Crimmins, who both lived in North Shields and worked for Newcastle-based Hatton Traffic Management.

The tragedy happened during roadworks on the A66, near Bowes, in County Durham, when the pair were asked to move the metal column.

The cause of death for both men was given as electrocution.

The inquest, at Bishop Auckland, heard how there were no safety measures, known as goalposts, on the site, to prevent the column hitting the cables.

Father's campaign

The father of one of th dead men said after the hearing he intended to campaign for better safety.

Mr Kim Crimmins said: "Goal posts should be made law."

Health and Safety Executive Inspector, Bruno Porter, said after the hearing: "One of the ways of preventing equipment and plant coming into contact with overhead wires are goalposts.

"That is one element the HSE investigation has been looking at. It would unfair to say that goalposts here would have prevented the tragedy, they are one measure but there are others."

Police name electrocuted men
17 Jan 02 |  England

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