Jury rules four construction site deaths were 'accidental'

An inquest jury has returned verdicts of accidental deaths on four men killed on a building site in Great Yarmouth.

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Relatives of construction workers demand action

An inquest jury decided today that four men crushed to death under tonnes of steel when a metal cage "folded like a picnic table" were accidentally killed.

The men, who were all from Suffolk, were building foundations for a new test chamber at the Claxton Engineering site in Great Yarmouth in January 2011. Now relatives say the Health and Safety Executive should take action against those responsible so that justice is done. Natalie Gray reports

Jury says construction site deaths were accidental

Claxton Engineering, Great Yarmouth

An inquest jury has returned verdicts of accidental deaths on four men killed on a building site in Great Yarmouth.

Two brothers Thomas and Dan Hazelton, Peter Johnson and Adam Taylor, all from Suffolk, died at Claxton Engineering when a steel structure collapsed on them in January 2011. The coroner said the hearing was "a fact finding exercise not a fault finding exercise."

The four men who died

A Press statement issued on behalf of the families of Dan and Tom Hazelton, Peter Johnson and Adam Taylor:

"We will never be able to come to terms with our devastating loss; four men went to work that day and never came home again.

The evidence clearly showed that Dan, Tom, Peter and Adam were conscientious and skilled workers and no concerns were raised about the steel work they were doing.

We hope the Health and Safety Executive will take appropriate action against those responsible so justice is done, and that lessons will be learned to ensure such a terrible tragedy never happens again.

We would like to thank those who tried to rescue the men and for all the support we've received over the last three years."

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Inquest into construction site deaths - jury retires

The four men who died

The Jury at the Inquest into the deaths of four men who died in an industrial accident in Norfolk has retired to consider its verdict. Norfolk Coroner Jaqueline Lake has told the jury:

"This is a fact finding exercise and not a fault finding exercise." She suggested that the correct wording for its verdict would be "accidental death'.

The four men, from Suffolk, were crushed to death by a steel structure in 2011

Brothers Thomas and Dan Hazelton who were 30 and 26 years old and from Stanton in Suffolk, Peter Johnson who was 42 and also from Stanton and 28-year-old Adam Taylor from Rickinghall died at Claxton Engineering in Great Yarmouth on 21st January 2011.

Claxton Engineering, Great Yarmouth

They were 4 feet below ground when a steel cage they were working in collapsed and crushed all four men.

They had been working as sub contractors for the firm Encompass who had been asked to build a pressure test facility for the offshore industry.

Family photos of men killed on construction site

Dan Hazelton Credit: Dan's family
Peter Johnson Credit: Peter's family

New pictures have been released of two men killed on a construction site in Great Yarmouth three years ago.

A steel structure collapsed on Peter Johnson, Adam Taylor and Tom and Daniel Hazelton while they were working at the Claxton Engineering site in 2011.

An inquest into the deaths continues.

Construction deaths Inquest hears about health and safety warnings

Inquest into deaths of four men on a construction site in 2011

The Jury at the Inquest into the deaths of four men who died in an industrial accident in Norfolk, has been hearing how the site's health and safety officer had issued warnings about working practices there.

The four men, from Suffolk, were crushed to death by a steel structure in 2011

Brothers Thomas and Dan Hazelton who were 30 and 26 years old and from Stanton in Suffolk, Peter Johnson who was 42 and also from Stanton and 28-year-old Adam Taylor from Rickinghall died at Claxton Engineering in Great Yarmouth on 21st January 2011.

They were 4 feet below ground when a steel cage they were working in collapsed and crushed all four men.

They had been working as sub contractors for the firm Encompass who had been asked to build a pressure test facility for the offshore industry.

Claxton Engineering, Great Yarmouth Credit: ITV News Anglia

Ian Thine who was then the Health and Safety Manager for Claxton Engineering told the jury that he'd voiced concerns about the men often now wearing their personal protection equipment, and that there had been questions asked about how they got in ad out of the structure they were building.

In his own words it was described as a "tight squeeze", but he went on to say "In hindsight, I should have done a full risk assessment on the site and asked Encompass to do their own."

The jury was told there was no emergency response plan on site.

The Inquest is expected to last all week.

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Second day of construction worker deaths inquest

Inquest into deaths of four men on a construction site in 2011 Credit: ITV News Anglia

The jury at the inquest of four men who died in an industrial accident in Norfolk have been hearing evidence from the site's health and safety officer.

Thomas and Dan Hazelton, Peter Johnson and Adam Taylor died three years ago at Claxton Engineering in Great Yarmouth in 2011.

All four men were from Suffolk and were crushed by a steel structure while working four feet below ground level.

The health and safety officer said he'd raised concerns about workers not wearing personal protection gear on site.

The Inquest is expected to last all week.

Inquest into Great Yarmouth building site deaths

The families of four men killed in an industrial accident in Great Yarmouth will this week find out what caused the tragedy.

The men who died came from the Suffolk villages of Stanton and Rickinghall. They were working on a construction site when a steel cage collapsed on top of them.

Their inquests began today at Sprowston near Norwich. Click above to watch Malcolm Robertson's report.

Inquest opens in construction site deaths

Claxton Engineering, Great Yarmouth

The inquest has opened into the deaths of four construction workers in Great Yarmouth in 2011.The jury heard how the men were working on constructing a test bay for the offshore industry. At 17 minutes past 2 on January 21st 2011, a steel structure collapsed on top of them.

Daniel and Thomas Hazelton were killed immediately, and attempts to resuscitate Peter Johnson and Adam Taylor failed. All four died from traumatic asphyxia.

Detective Chief Inspector Andy Guy from the Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team said the police looked at the possibility of individual and corporate manslaughter charges.

A file was presented to the Crown Prosecution Service's special crimes division, which said there was no realistic prospect of securing a conviction.

He said he challenged this but the CPS were adamant. Asked by the barrister representing the families of the victims why he'd issued a challenge, Detective Chief Inspector Guy said he wanted a second opinion.

Inquest opens into building site deaths of 4 men

Inquest opens into the deaths of four construction site workers Credit: ITV News Anglia

The Inquest into the deaths of four men killed on a construction site in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, in 2011 has opened.

Friends and relatives of the four men who died have been arriving to hear more details about what happened.

Construction site, Great Yarmouth

Peter Johnson, Adam Taylor and Tom and Daniel Hazelton were working at Claxton Engineering's site on North River Road, when a steel structure collapsed on them.

Claxton Engineering's site on North River Road, Great Yarmouth Credit: ITV News Anglia

It's taken three years for the Inquest to be opened. It's expected to last all week.

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