Case law: Transport companies’ health and safety procedures should take power lines into account
Employers with a fleet that includes high vehicles should ensure their health and safety procedures and training take into account the potential risk to those vehicles and their drivers from overhead power lines.
This update was published in Legal Alert - February 2019
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A lorry driver pulled into a layby to clean his lorry between loads as required as part of his job. However, 11kV electricity power lines ran along the layby at a height of 7.3 metres. The lorry connected with the power lines and the driver suffered severe 25% burns and life-changing injuries requiring amputations and other major surgery.
He claimed that the employer’s health and safety risk assessment procedures were inadequate. The court agreed that the employer’s procedures were inadequate and that the employee was entitled to damages.
- Employers with a fleet that includes high vehicles should ensure their health and safety procedures and training take into account the potential risk to vehicles and their drivers from overhead power lines.
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