Local authority fined after employee suffers electric shock at work

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Local authority fined after employee suffers electric shock at work

20th May 2009

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is urging employers to ensure proper safety procedures are in place to ensure staff are kept safe.

The call follows the prosecution of the London Borough of Havering's (LB) Street Care Department yesterday (19 May) at City of London Magistrates Court, after an employee was struck with an 11,000 volt cable buried in the pavement.

LB Havering, based in East London, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The court fined the local authority £10,000 and ordered them to pay costs of £9,810.

The investigation followed an incident in Main Road, Romford on 5 December 2007, where a worker suffered flash burns and electric shock. While the untrained worker was installing a bench, they were using a hydraulic breaker to dig holes and struck a buried 11,000 volt cable in the pavement.

John Crookes, HSE Inspector, said, "This incident could have been fatal. London Borough of Havering failed to provide a safe system of work as a result of which a temporary council worker was injured."

Source - HSE Website