Company Pays a Hefty Price for Fireball Incidence Involving Workers

The HSE impeached a company and its manager and imposed a fine of £10,000 for a fire incident that happened on August 10 2010. The Birmingham based firm RVB Investments UK Ltd and Clifford Leigh, the manager came under the axe when a fire was started when two workers cut a 1,000-volt live electric wire at a Telford industrial unit.

The case of the two RVB Investment workers was heard at the Telford Magistrates’ Court. Mr. David Rawlins (46) and Eamonn Osborne (53) were initiated to locate an underground water drip at a vacant unit of the company in Halesfield 5, Telford. They were told by Mr. Leigh to dig at a site outside the unit. When they had dug up the ground to approximately 40 cm, they cut through a live electric cable of 1,000 volts.

The two were swallowed up by a ball of fire endured severe burns to their faces, arms and hands. They were carried to hospital by airways. The doctors thought the chances of Mr. Osborne making it alive were bleak as his injuries were severe.

The power of the fire was approximated as 4.3 million watts of energy. The intensity of the heat blew a 500-amp fuse at a nearby electrical substation and a part of the electrical breaker’s metal tool was annihilated.

Upon investigation, HSE found that RVB Investments had not considered the risks, checked for underground electrical cables or ensured secure digging, got site plans or planned safe system of work. In addition, the two men had no training with underground services’ risks.

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