North Yorkshire heating company fined for corporate manslaughter of 24-year-old employee who fell from roof

A heating company has been fined more than £160,000 for the corporate manslaughter of a 24-year-old employee.

Tuesday, 10th November 2020, 6:00 am
Luke Crocher (Image: NYP)

Luke Crocher was working for Northallerton Heating Centre at a house in Bishop Monkton on April 5, 2018.

He fell 30 feet from the roof of a house onto the rear patio and sustained serious head injuries.

Luke was rushed to Leeds General Infirmary but died from his injuries later that day.

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Acting as a representative of the business, one of the partners, 59-year-old Mark Anthony Flintoft of Northallerton, appeared Leeds Crown Court today and pleaded guilty to a charge of corporate manslaughter.

The company has been ordered to pay £160,000 over seven years plus £36,315 in costs in relation to Luke's death.

The court heard that Northallerton Heating Centre had failed to implement suitable and sufficient measures to prevent Luke from falling and had failed to ensure the work was properly planned, supervised and carried out safely.

The business had also failed to ensure Luke received the appropriate instruction to keep him safe, was correctly supervised or working in line with the relevant working-at-height regulations.

Speaking about the result at court today, senior investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector Jim Glass of North Yorkshire Police said: “This is such a tragic case which was completely preventable.

“Luke was carrying out a day’s work, from which he should have been able to return safely to his family who have been left utterly heartbroken by his death.

"The Northallerton Heating Centre failed to ensured his safety at work and did not take all the relevant steps to make sure he was never able to fall from such a height.

“I hope this case is a timely reminder to all employers that the health and safety of their staff is their responsibility and is paramount.

"North Yorkshire Police take all reports of this nature incredibly seriously and any breach of health and safety regulations which risk serious injury or death will be investigated thoroughly.

"I’d like to thank colleagues at the Health and Safety Executive and Crown Prosecution Service for their support during this very detailed investigation.

“While I realise the result today does not ease any of the pain Luke’s family have experienced since his death, I hope it provides them with a sense of closure and helps them move on to more positive times.”