Manslaughter convictions have been delivered against two construction industry professionals in relation to the death of a labourer who was crushed to death in an accident at work.
Southwark Crown Court heard that Anghel Milosavlevici, 37, was killed while carrying out basement excavation works at a house in South West London four years ago.
Siday Construction Ltd commercial director Conrad Sidebottom and Richard Golding, a self-employed health and safety consultant, were both found guilty of manslaughter following a trial.
Mr Milosavlevici was digging a basement extension to a £2 million semi-detached Victorian house in Ellersby Street, Fulham, when the tragedy occurred on December 2 2010.
Excavations not properly supported
Emergency services were called to the property after Mr Milosavlevici was crushed when the ground floor collapsed, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.
The court heard that the excavations had not been properly supported during underpinning work.
A dangerous structure notice was served on the house after a local authority building control officer found it to be in danger of collapse. Other contractors later stabilised the structure.
The court was told that Mr Sidebottom, 46, was the site manager and, as such, was responsible for the management of the works. He was said to be aware of the dangerous state of excavations but made no effort to make the building safer.
In relation to Mr Golding, 43, the jury was told that he was responsible for drafting the method statement for the works.
Method statement was inadequate
However, the method statement was inadequate and was not followed. Mr Golding was also responsible for carrying out health and safety inspections on site and had authority to stop dangerous work, which he failed to do.
Mr Milosavlevici’s fiancee Claudia and sister Cristina described him as “kind-hearted and generous” man in a joint statement read outside court.
They admitted that they were left shocked at evidence demonstrating how dangerous the site had become and how little concern Mr Sidebottom had shown in relation to the lack of safety at the site.
Conrad Sidebottom, of Hertford, denied killing Mr Milosavlevici by gross negligence, but was found guilty. Richard Golding was found guilty of failing to take reasonable care for the health and safety of others.
Claims conducted by Accident Advice Helpline are done on a no win, no fee* basis, and can usually be done over the telephone.
Date Published: December 4, 2014
Author: David Brown