Quarry blast showers passing cars with rocks

Grant Prior 4 years ago
Share

Two firms have been fined after a quarry explosion sent rocks flying 200 metres into the air and onto a public road, causing damage to waiting cars.

The falling blast debris landed well outside of the designated danger zone during the incident at Brayford Quarry in Brayford on 24 February 2011.

The rocks narrowly avoided striking a workman who had halted traffic whilst the blasting took place.

Frome-based WCD Sleeman and Sons Ltd, who organised the blast, and quarry operator Hanson Quarry Products Europe Ltd were both prosecuted following the incident.

Barnstaple Magistrates’ Court heard that two cars waiting in the queue on a nearby public road, were hit by flying rock, which dented the bonnet of one and a smashed the windscreen of the other.

HSE inspectors discovered an 8.5kg piece of rock on the other side of the road. Six other smaller pieces of rock were also recovered from the road.

A workman acting as a sentry on the road to manage traffic during the blasting heard the rocks coming through the trees and covered his head with his stop-go board and took cover next to a large van which was waiting on the road.

The driver of the van saw pieces of rock pass over the workman.

WCD Sleeman and Sons Ltd, of Valley View, Vallis Park, Frome, Somerset, was fined £20,000 and ordered to pay £17,000 in costs after pleading guilty to safety breaches.

Quarry operator Hanson Quarry Products Europe Ltd of Castle Hill, Maidenhead, Berkshire, was fined £20,000 with £14,000 costs after pleading guilty to a breach of the Quarries Regulations 1999.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector of Quarries, Mike Tetley, said: “This was a very serious incident that could easily have led to death or serious injury.

“Blasting operations at quarries are inherently high risk, and these risks must be rigorously controlled by good explosives engineering practice and in accordance with legal requirements.

“Where contractors are involved it is important that appropriate levels of communication and co-operation are in place. It is totally unacceptable for both members of the public and employees to be put at serious risk of being hit by rocks, as happened here in an entirely preventable incident.

“I hope this case sends a clear message to the industry that proper planning and control is required at all times.”

 

Latest news

Network Rail to pay Carillion workers for next three months

Suppliers will also be paid for work carried out post-insolvency
9 hours ago

Carillion bankers set up £225m fund to help subcontractors

Task force launched to help stricken supply chain
1 day ago

HS2 reveals 3.4km Colne Valley viaduct design

New sleek-look railway viaduct will be one of the longest in the country
18 hours ago

Barratt to build 2,700 homes in Swindon

House builder will invest over £180m in infrastructure and housing
19 hours ago

Balfour Beatty in talks to head off more Crossrail strikes

Unite union announces plans for four more days of industrial action
19 hours ago

Survey drone hits crane on construction site

Air accident investigators called in after drone strike
19 hours ago

CITB calls on contractors to save Carillion apprentices

Skills body could be £3.8m better off following collapse
1 day ago

Betting Spy: West Ham and Leicester at the double

Hammers can beat Bournemouth despite yet another injury to Andy Carroll
1 day ago

Opinion: Carillion legacy must be pay and procurement reform

Carillion car-crash must finally jolt industry and government into action
2 days ago

Boost your online presence with the new Enquirer Directory

New site for suppliers and buyers will showcase their products, services and latest stories
3 months ago

Barratt London shelves 27-storey Aldgate tower project

Barratt abandons Phase 2 of city fringe tower scheme
2 days ago

Banks pledge not to pull plug on Carillion subcontractors

High street lenders promise raft of measure to help small businesses
2 days ago

NAO challenges value of PFI contracts

Little evidence PFI offers more construction cost certainty or operating efficiency, says watchdog
2 days ago

Skanska UK on alert as group plans 3,000 job cuts

Skanska Group says UK business focus to switch to core markets
3 days ago

Sheffield United submits plan for South Stand

Championship club plans landmark stand raising capacity to 38,000 seats
2 days ago

Kier fined £100,000 for hospital oil spill

Leak at Dorset hospital site lands contractor in court
2 days ago

Carillion sites still on hold as hopes rise for services deals

Insolvency Service update gives hope to suppliers
3 days ago

Subcontractors left stranded by Carillion “early payment” system

Millions sitting in controversial system may never reach suppliers
3 days ago

Crunch day for over 8,000 Carillion staff

Carillion went bust with just £29m left and would have been out of cash today
3 days ago

Balfour tipped for Carillion’s Leeds ring road job

£115m East Leeds Orbital Route contract consolation for Balfour after £45m hit
3 days ago

Colmore Tang offers early payment to Carillion subbies

Birmingham contractor to speed-up payments to its suppliers hit by Carillion collapse
3 days ago

Lendlease launches £1.5bn build-to-rent partnership

First £450m tranche invested in private rental build at Elephant & Castle
3 days ago

Government fast-tracks probe into Carillion directors

Business secretary extends investigation into actions of directors and auditors
4 days ago

Race starts for £8.7bn Highways England framework

New approach will allow smaller contractors to take part in regional roads delivery
4 days ago

Supply chain owed £2bn by Carillion

Subcontractors hoping for protection from Project Bank Accounts
4 days ago

Carillion fall-out hits Van Elle and Speedy

Specialist subcontractors start to disclose cost of collapse
4 days ago

Winvic lands Sheffield build-to-rent deal

Construction to start this month on nine-storey block
4 days ago

Willmott Dixon wins second Kent Uni project

Firm to start £13m contract for School of Economic building
4 days ago

Carillion collapse to cost Balfour Beatty £45m

Galliford Try also hit for up to £40m on Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route
5 days ago

Carillion staff and suppliers told to carry on working

Liquidator sets up website offering advice to anyone hit by the collapse
5 days ago

Contractor services