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Freight firm faces trial over death of seaman crushed by cargo container at Dublin Port

Dennis Regana died after a steel container dropped on him on 14 November 2018.

Image: Sasko Lazarov via RollingNews.ie

A FREIGHT TRANSPORT firm is to face trial over the death of a Filipino seaman who was crushed by a falling cargo container in Dublin Port.

Dennis Regana, a crew member of the container ship MV Francop, died after a steel container dropped on him on 14 November 2018.

He was on his vessel docked at South Bank Quay, Pigeon House Road, Ringsend, Dublin 4 when he was fatally injured.

Following an investigation by the Health and Safety Authority, charges have been brought against Marine Terminals Ltd, of South Bank Quay, and an employee of that firm.

The case came before Judge Anthony Halpin at Dublin District.

He adjourned it until later this month for books of evidence to be completed by the Director of Public Prosecutions who has directed trial on indictment in the circuit court, which has wider sentencing powers.

The water transport firm and a staff member are accused putting workers at risk and as a consequence, able bodied seaman Regana, suffered personal injury and died.

It is alleged it happened while a stack of four cargo containers was lifted off the vessel simultaneously with a crane, resulting in the bottom container parting from the stack and falling onto the vessel causing the sailor’s fatal injuries.

The prosecution case is that the containers should not have been lifted together simultaneously and that this had resulted in the bottom container parting from the stack and falling onto the ship.

It is alleged against the firm that in particular there was no appropriate planning, instruction, communication and supervision of the method to insert a missing deck lock under the bottom container in the stack.

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It is also part of the charge that there were fragmented verbal and radio communications between personnel on the vessel, on the quayside and in the crane, there was inadequate instruction and supervision on the method to be used to insert a missing lock and no clear system on how the activity was to be carried out.

The charges are contrary to the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005.

The defendants have not yet indicated how they will plead to the charges.

Comments are closed as legal proceedings are ongoing.

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Tom Tuite

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