Work party death led to £66,000 fine for angling club

Dave

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An anglers association has been ordered to pay a £66,000 fine after admitting breaching health and safety laws that led to the death of one of its volunteers.


On 9 October 2019, a group of volunteers from the Birmingham Angler’s Association (BAA) were carrying out routine fisheries maintenance working, cutting back and clearing vegetation along the riverbank near Pershore, Worcestershire. As fallen branches were being cleared with the use of a chain saw, Maurice Taylor, a member of the party, was hit on the head by a thick falling branch.


Mr Taylor was treated at the scene and then taken by air ambulance to University Hospital, Coventry having suffered a traumatic brain injury. A week later, when it was clear he would not recover, Mr Taylor’s family made the decision to turn off his life support.


An investigation by Worcestershire Regulatory Services (WRS) – on behalf of Wychavon District Council – found that the group of volunteers had received no formal health and safety instruction, had not been properly trained for the kind of work they were carrying out, and were using inadequate equipment.

Read more here:

 

ukzero1

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That's a tragedy. What it doesn't say though, given the outcome of the investigation, is if the family are going to take legal action.
 

Dave

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That wouldn't normally be disclosed as any action would be between the two parties involved.
 

ATTICUS FINCH

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Tragic loss of life and your heart goes out to his family and friends.
Is this now going to have a knock on effect with insurance companies saying that every club needs a qualified H@S officer to accompany or train all working party members in future.
 

Trogg

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Is this now going to have a knock on effect with insurance companies saying that every club needs a qualified H@S officer to accompany or train all working party members in future.
More likely they'll insist on contractors being brought in to do the job!
 

OldTaff

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It will get to a point of contractors only but then each club will need someone with an understanding of H&S to sign off the RAMS and check the contractors insurance is fit for purpose.
 

tipitinmick

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Oh how sad. Poor bloke. Accidents happen but, wasn’t someone watching out ? No one is allowed anywhere near our trees when we are cutting. We cut so much, turn the saw off and wait for the all clear. Take the fallen branches away then start again. What a sad accident. Poor chap helping out and ends up dying. RIP fella
 

tipitinmick

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That's a tragedy. What it doesn't say though, given the outcome of the investigation, is if the family are going to take legal action.
You keep yourself safe Peter. Are you listening young man ? I know you go on a lot of work parties. Let’s not be having any accidents. 👍
 

The Landlord

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Tragic that. Our club posted it on our facebook page this morning, saying "This is why we're so strict about work parties". To be fair, they are pretty strict & use a qualified tree surgeon for all that sort of stuff.
 

carphauler

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I think we discussed this briefly in the Severn thread when the news was released by the BAA in April, a terrible accident that shouldn't have happened to a man volunteering his time to help others, as far as I'm aware the the work is now paid for and contracted out which means less bank clearing judging by the places I fish.
RIP Maurice
 

Peter

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Horrible incident given the loss suffered then to be insulted with a pathetic payment. 😔
The money mentioned was not a compensation payment to the family but a fine imposed on the BAA who admitted breaching the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations and section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act, for failing to ensure the safety of those not in its employment. The organisation was fined £66,000, and ordered to pay costs of £17,500 plus a victim surcharge of £181.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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This type of story does leave me somewhat puzzled.

Would it have made a difference had the working party had been given formal H&S training? You can get all the training in the world but if, through a moment's inattention, or through a miscommunication with the guy wielding the chainsaw you are in the wrong place at the wrong time the result will be the same.

I think it is common sense not to stand under a tree when someone is chainsawing branches off.

I can understand the equipment comment, probably referring to hard hats. But how many building sites do we see with workers wearing no PPE at all?
 

Corn Master

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The money mentioned was not a compensation payment to the family but a fine imposed on the BAA who admitted breaching the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations and section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act, for failing to ensure the safety of those not in its employment. The organisation was fined £66,000, and ordered to pay costs of £17,500 plus a victim surcharge of £181.
🥺
 

Dave

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It's surprising how many people don't realise how heavy branches and tree trunks are.

Several years ago I lent a scaffold tower to a neighbour so he could cut five main branches off a Willow tree.
He did that bit then tied the scaffold tower to the upper reaches of the trunk - then cut the section of trunk off :eek:
It fell down, bounced the scaffold tower, then pulled it over throwing him of it resulting in a broken vertebrae in his neck and one in his back, plus other injuries.
The tower was replaceable, he wasn't.
Luckily he escaped paralysis but it took a while to get back to somewhere near fitness; his rugby career saved him as such but that was the end of that also.
The section of trunk must have weighed in excess of 200lb.
 
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