Farmer to pay £100k after man hit overhead power lines and died

A 52-year-old man died on a farm after his crane hit overhead power cables
A 52-year-old man died on a farm after his crane hit overhead power cables

A farmer has been ordered to pay almost £100,000 after a man was electrocuted when his crane came into contact with overhead power lines.

52-year-old Edward Evans, a scrap metal collector from Elton, Cheshire, hit the power lines as he attempted to collect broken lightweight metal cages on Holm Farm in Ince, January 15 2015.

And despite a yellow warning sign marking the overhead cables, he came into contact with them and was killed.

Paramedics came onto the farm and tried to resuscitate Mr Evans, but he later died in hospital.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the scrap metal had been left under live 11kz overhead power lines.

This week, Liverpool Crown Court has heard that the tragedy could have been preventable if the farmer identified the risks of having overhead power lines on the land.

JH Willis & Sons of Marsh Lane, Cheshire have now been fined £85,000 and ordered to pay costs of £11,823.50 for breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974.

HSE inspector Jane Carroll told the Chester Chronicle: “This tragic incident could easily have been prevented if the farm partnership had acted to identify and manage the risks involved with overhead power lines on their land, and to put a safe system of work in place.

“The dangers associated with OHPL are well known and a wealth of advice and guidance is freely available from HSE and other energy suppliers.

"Duty holders must make sure they properly assess and apply effective control measures to minimise the risk from overhead power lines."