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Electrical fault causes electrocution of plumber

A Bristol property development firm has been prosecuted after a plumber was electrocuted while installing a washing machine.

The HSE reported that the worker was killed while working on the appliance in the kitchen of a house in Clifton, Bristol in March 2008.

During the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecution of employers Birakos Enterprises Limited, Bristol Magistrates´ Court heard the socket that powered the washing machine was wired incorrectly.

Despite the kitchen´s electrics being signed off as safe by the electrical division of Birakos Enterprises Limited, it was discovered the live and earth wires had been put into the socket incorrectly, meaning the washing machine became electrically live when plugged in.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Steven Frain said: "The fault should have been found during testing but this fault was left unresolved and ultimately led to the death of a young father."

Birakos Enterprises Limited of Clifton Wood House, Clifton Wood Road, Bristol was found guilty of breaching Regulation 4 (1) and 16 of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 and Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and was fined a total of £125,000 and ordered to pay costs of £50,000.

More at www.hse.org

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