The prosecution followed an incident in March 2009 when trainee design engineer Jake Herring was electrocuted as he carried out live electrical testing. Subsequent investigations established that there was no adequate risk assessment in place and that a notice outlining a procedure for employees to follow which was placed on the wall was unsuitable. Mr Herring had been carrying out live electrical testing and it is believed that following the test he was disconnecting the panel when he was electrocuted. Although there was a test box, with lights to warn the panel was live, this was positioned on the other side of the panel door. Mr Herring would not have seen the warning lights engaged.
The investigation also concluded that there was inadequate supervision of the testing area and that there was no formal procedure by which Mr Herring had been assessed as competent to undertake electrical testing.
The starting point for the fine was confirmed by HHJ Dugdale to be £450k, but was reduced by one-third to reflect the guilty pleas to breaches of Regulation 3(1)(a) of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations and Regulation 14(c) of the Electricity at Work Regulations. In addition, Grundfos Pumps were also ordered to pay costs of £115k.