Flower farm fined £50,000 over worker’s power line death

A flower farm in Norfolk has been found guilty of safety failings after the death of a worker who was electrocuted on site.

Grzegorz Krystian Pieton died when the metal hydraulic lift trailer he was towing hit 11,000-volt overhead cables on the farm at Belmont Nursery in Terrington on 15 July 2010.

The 26-year-old, who was electrocuted by the cables, had worked in the nursery for many years prior to the incident.

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Earlier in the court case at Norwich Crown Court, it was established that the company was responsible for its employees under health and safety laws, suggesting that Mr Pieton’s choice to enter the cable area did not diminish the responsibility of the firm.

During the hearing, the court was told that farm owner, King’s Lynn-based PS and JE Ward Ltd, had breached three sections of the Health and Safety at Work Act by allowing Mr Pieton to venture into the area.

The company had earlier been found not guilty of corporate manslaughter, but Judge Stephen Holt said “nevertheless a crime had been committed”.

Judge Holt imposed a fine of £50,000 on PS and JE Ward Ltd and the company was ordered to pay £47,932 in costs.

Speaking after the hearing, a company spokesman said: “Everyone at Belmont Nursery remains profoundly saddened by the death of Mr Pieton, and his family have been, and are constantly, in our thoughts.”