Excavator driver fined after falling bucket injures worker

An excavator driver has been prosecuted for safety failings after an unsecure bucket fell from the machine he was using and badly injured a worker on a Gloucester building site.

Dominic Dalton, 36, from Erdington, Birmingham, suffered head injuries, a broken lower leg, broken pelvis and badly bruised arm in the incident at Quedgeley Urban Village, on Naas Lane, on 24 November 2011.

Excavator driver Kevan Fell was working on a drainage system at the new housing estate and needed to change the bucket on the vehicle.

Cheltenham Magistrates’ Court heard today (15 October) that he carried out this operation from the cab, but then failed to test the bucket was secure by shaking it, pressing it on the ground or checking it manually.

Instead, he started using it for excavation work straightaway and the bucket came off, hitting Mr Dalton who was working below.

Mr Fell, of Hackwell Street, Napton, Warwickshire, was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for breaching Section 7(a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act etc. 1974. He pleaded guilty to the charge and was fined £500 and ordered to pay £1,746 in costs. He was also ordered to pay £3,500 in compensation to Mr Dalton.

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