The importance of risk assessments — first publicity order in corporate manslaughter case and general case update

These cases highlight one point over and over again: risk assessments. They are either not in place at all or are undertaken but not followed. Businesses must grasp that they are the backbone of good safety management and when used properly not only ensure work is done safely but also aids efficiency. It should be viewed as a business planning tool and not merely destined for the dusty files marked ‘Safety’.

Princes Sporting Club is the fifth company in the UK to be convicted of corporate manslaughter following the death of an 11-year-old girl during a birthday party on Back Lake. The company was ordered to pay a total of £135,000, consisting of a £35,000 fine and £100,000 in costs, which amounted to the totality of its assets. The judge made it clear that he was fining the company for every penny that it had and commented that had the company been trading at the time he would have imposed a fine that would have put it out of business.

The court heard that the young girl was one of a number of children being pulled along on an inflatable banana boat, before falling into the lake and being hit by the speedboat towing the boat…

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