Mihai Hondru sustained multiple crush injuries when he was struck by a reversing bulldozer whilst working on the project near Junction 29 of the M25. He died at the scene as a result of his injuries. Mr Hondru had been working for J McArdle Contracts Ltd who were managing the rebuilding of the embankment. He had been directing lorries tipping their load on the embankment but whilst a one way system had been implemented to minimise the risk to pedestrians, the ground conditions were such that lorries had to reverse into their position. The HSE maintained that despite this change, the company failed to implement reasonable safety measures to address the risks associated with the traffic system.
J McArdle Contracts Ltd were found guilty of one charge under s.3 (1) HSWA and, since the company were no longer trading, were fined £2,000. The Judge commented that had the company still been active the fine would have been £200,000.
In addition to the company, the driver of the bulldozer, Steven Blackmore, was also prosecuted for failing to take sufficient account of Mr Hondru’s presence in his immediate vicinity. Mr Blackmore faced one charge of breach of Regulation 37(3) of the Construction (Design & Management) Regulations 2007 (any vehicle being used for the purposes of construction to be driven, operated or towed safely in the circumstances) and was also found guilty. He was sentenced to six months in prison, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to pay £2,500 in costs.