Farmer pleads guilty after worker fatally falls through cow shed

David Alan Rees fell through a fragile milking shed sky light
David Alan Rees fell through a fragile milking shed sky light

A farmer has been ordered to pay out nearly £30,000 after an employee fell through the fragile roof of a milking shed on the farm.

Mold Magistrates’ Court heard how on 19 July 2018 self-employed contractor David Alan Rees, 56, was fatally injured whilst he was clearing out the valley gutter from a ladder.

An ambulance was called to the farm but he died of his injuries later in hospital.

Investigators found that farmer Robert Latham of Knolton Farm, Overton, near Wrexham, failed to plan the work at height and did not have any suitable equipment available to do the work safely.

The 64-year-old admitted a health and safety charge following the incident last year.

He was fined £26,000 and has also been ordered to pay costs of £3922.60 and a surcharge of £170.

Health and Safety Executive (HSE), who prosecuted Mr Latham, said there are 'no winners in this tragic case'.

HSE inspector, Mhairi Duffy said: “Those in control of work have a responsibility to devise safe methods of working and to provide the necessary information, instruction and training to their workers and contractors in the safe system of working.

“If a suitable safe system of work had been in place prior to the incident, the death could have been prevented.”