Page last updated at 19:32 GMT, Thursday, 12 November 2009

Ship repair firm fined over death

A ship repair company in Cornwall has been ordered to pay more than £105,000 in fines and costs for safety breaches after a man was crushed to death.

John Datson, 51, died at Falmouth Docks after being struck by a crane platform while he was standing between it and the base of the crane in August 2006.

A&P Falmouth admitted breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act and regulations for lifting equipment.

It was fined £85,000 and ordered to pay costs of £21,500 at Truro Crown Court.

Training failures

Mr Datson, a painter, was engaged in moving the work platform towards a ship.

The platform was suspended by chains from a crane and Mr Datson and other dockside staff were helping the crane driver to guide the platform towards the ship.

The platform got stuck on the base of the crane and Mr Datson and a colleague had to free the platform. It came loose, crushing him.

The Health and Safety Executive said: "A&P Falmouth pleaded guilty to failing to introduce a safe system of work, especially with regard to the provision of sufficient information, instruction, training and supervision for employees using lifting equipment."

HSE inspector Barry Trudgian said: "If Mr Datson had received the proper training and or had been appropriately supervised, it is unlikely that this terrible tragedy would have happened."

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