October 30, 2013

A leading Donegal refuse collection company has been fined €12,000 for failing to comply with health and safety standards.

Ferry's Refuse

Ferry’s Refuse

Inspectors from the Health and Safety Authority called to the headquarters of Ferry Refuse Collection Ltd in Rossbracken, Manorcunningham.

The inspection followed an incident in which one of their lorries had been involved in an accident in which a three year old boy was killed in Letterkenny in 2010.

Ferry Refuse director Jim Ferry pleaded guilty to the breaches on behalf of the company.

HSA Inspector William Gaffney called to the company’s premises and asked to see the firm’s Safety Statement under the Health and Safety Act of 2005.

The act ensures that companies are identifying hazards and carrying out risk assessment.

Mr Gaffney told Letterkenny Circuit Court that he was concerned about the reversing of bin lorries under the Safety Statement given to him by Ferrys.

He said that across the country the HSA had encountered a number of fatalities or young and elderly people who were struck by reversing vehicles.

He said there was a process which companies follow which enabled them to put controls in place to prevent deaths because of reversing vehicles.

They included control measures including cameras, engineering barriers to prevent people being dragged under vehicles and audio reverse warnings.

The court heard that Ferrys had no previous convictions under the Health and Safety Act.

Judge John O’Hagan said sometimes it takes a tragic accident to bring a failure that may or may not be there.

“It is easy to examine it afterwards and realise that something is wrong,” he said.

Judge O’Hagan fined Ferry’s Refuse Collection €12,000.