An incorrectly secured tunnel thruster killed a 19-year old marine engineering apprentice

Safety shortcomings blamed for apprentice's death

Investigators have found marine engineering firm Tyne Slipway & Engineering was cutting corners in safety after a teenage apprentice was killed while working on an incorrectly secured tunnel thruster.

In December 2011, 19-year old Jason Burden was reassembling the machine on a work bench when it toppled and crashed on to him, causing fatal injuries.

The investigation by the Health and Safety Executive found the company did not document any risk assessment for working on the machine while positioned on the work bench and failed to secure the tunnel thruster with bolts and straps in a correct position on the work bench.

The company was ordered to pay a £75,000 fine plus additional £47,936.57 in costs after pleading guilty to breaching a section of the Health and Safety Act.

"Jason Burden was a talented and hardworking young man. His death could easily have been avoided if his employer had properly considered the risks associated with the repair of the tunnel thruster and then ensured that steps were taken to guarantee the stability of the tunnel thruster while on the work bench," said HSE inspector Paul Miller.

The news comes at the same time when another possible safety failure is being investigated at a Toyota plant in Derbyshire.

A 56-year-old driver died after being trapped between two lorries at 12:40am on Wednesday.

The incident is being investigated by Derbyshire Police and the Health and Safety Executive. However, no details have been released yet.

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