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Business owner prosecuted over fatal accident

The owner of a business based in Odiham, Hampshire has been sentenced to eight months in prison, suspended for 18 months, after a fatal accident.

Colin Malam and his company Lubrication Management Services (LMS) Ltd pleaded guilty to health and safety at work offences following a prosecution brought by Hart District Council. The case followed the tragic death of delivery driver Michael Paull in 2018.

Michael Paull fell from the flatbed of an HGV which had not been risk-assessed. He died from his injuries 10 days later. Hart District Council Environmental Health Officers investigated the accident and advised LMS that systems were inadequate, and Improvement Notices were served in July 2018. However, the company continued to operate an unsafe system of work and legal proceedings commenced in 2019.

LMS and Mr Malam pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that employees were not exposed to risks to their health and safety whilst working from height on HGVs. In addition to the custodial sentence, LMS was fined £48,000 and costs of £110,000 were awarded to the Council.

Councillor Sara Kinnell, Cabinet member for Environmental Health, said: “This was a very sad and difficult case and my thoughts go to Mr Paull’s family.

“The standards of health and safety at Lubrication Management Services Limited fell far below the standard expected for a business of this nature. This ultimately led to Mr Paull's untimely death. Michael Paull was a highly regarded member of the Odiham community who took great pride in his service to the community as a retained firefighter for over 40 years.

“We hope that the resolution of this case will give the family the much-needed closure to move forward with their lives. We would like to thank our partners in the Health and Safety Executive, Hampshire Constabulary and South-Central Ambulance Service for their assistance with this case.”

The coroner’s inquest will follow on from the court proceedings with a date to be confirmed.

Hart District Council October 2021


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