Jury raises safety concerns over death of worker in Holmfirth

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AN inquest jury has raised fresh concerns over safety procedures at a building site where a man died in an horrific incident almost four years ago.

Mark Taylor, 36, of Leeming Bar, North Yorkshire, was crushed by a 54-tonne pile-driving machine at a site in Holmfirth in April 2011.

An inquest into his death heard that Mr Taylor was a “dedicated and conscientious” worker and at the time of the accident was performing a “routine task” which he and colleagues had undertaken many times.

The jury returned an accidental death verdict but said “numerous errors occurred” in the lead up to his death.

The jury did not go into detail after taking legal advice from coroner Oliver Longstaff.

After the case, the Health and Safety Executive said it was reviewing the findings of the inquest as part of an ongoing investigation.

A HSE spokesperson said: “A final decision will be made in due course on whether any further action will be taken.”

He confirmed that HSE has previously started legal proceedings against two companies working at the Holmfirth site, Sheffield-based Green Piling Ltd and Environmental Scientifics Group Ltd, for alleged safety breaches. Both companies were later acquitted when HSE decided not to present any evidence.

Two men who had been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter by gross negligence were told in 2012 that the Crown Prosecution Service had decided not to prosecute.

A spokesperson for Green Piling said: “This inquest followed the sad death of Mr Taylor on 18 April 2011 and our thoughts are with his family and friends. We note that the jury reached a conclusion of accidental death at the inquest today and following a full investigation by the HSE, Green Piling Limited was acquitted of health and safety offences in 2014. The company continues to operate with health and safety as its top priority.”