MoD given third Crown Censure for driver death

Belinda Liversedge
British Safety Council
07 Mar 2017
Ministry of Defence. Photograph Creative Commons / Robin Sones

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has been issued with its third Crown Censure in 12 months after an agency driver was killed by a reversing vehicle.

Graham Wood, 55, of Bicester, Oxfordshire, had been delivering goods to a large holding area in MoD Kineton, Warwickshire when he was crushed between a reversing lorry and a stationary vehicle.

HSE’s investigation into the incident of 19 November 2013 found there was no safe system of work to identify and control the risks from large vehicle movement, despite the risks being 'well known'. 

Jane Lassey, HSE’s deputy director of field operations said: “The risks arising from vehicle movements are well known and suitable measures required to reduce these risks are understood.

“Like any other employer, the MoD has a responsibility to reduce dangers to agency workers, as well as their own employees, on their sites as far as they properly can, and in this case they failed Graham Wood.”

In being administered the Crown Censure, MoD has admitted breaching Sections 2(1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 for exposing their employees and those not directly employed by MoD, to risks.

There is no financial penalty associated with a Crown Censure. However, it is an official document of a failure to meet health and safety standards set out in law.

It marks the third Crown Censure for the MoD in three months. In September 2016, the MoD was found guilty of health and safety breaches after a soldier died when he was shot in the neck on a training exercise.

In March, it was issued a Crown Censure after three soldiers died while on a training exercise in the Brecon Beacons.

Following the incident in Warwickshire, a safe system of work including marked parking bays, well defined walkways for pedestrians and a one way system has been introduced.