by Hugh Hoagland
September 25, 2010
Building firm fined after electrical blast
By Catriona Webster
An Aberdeen building firm was fined £9,000 yesterday after an employee was badly burned in an electrical explosion.
Sheriff James Tierney ordered the owners of Graeme W. Cheyne (Builders) Ltd to pay an additional £4,000 in compensation to joiner George Forbes at a hearing at Aberdeen Sheriff Court.
The company, of Sugarhouse Lane, previously admitted health and safety failures that led to Mr Forbes, 62, handling a redundant electricity power supply device known as a fuse cut-out that was still live.
Mr Forbes was working on a construction site at 238-242 Holburn Street on November 11, 2008, when he tried to remove the fuse cut-out to put up some plasterboard.
The cut-out was connected to a 415-volt cable and Mr Forbes was badly burned when he touched it.
He was taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, where he stayed for nine days and was treated for burns to his hand and face.
A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation revealed that the cable was twisted, causing a short-circuit that created enough energy to melt the cable and create a small explosion.
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