Pooil Vaaish Black Limestone Ltd has been fined £60,000 for health and safety breaches following the death of an employee last year.

Nathan Harvey, aged 30, died after he was hit by a falling piece of stone at a company site at Douglas Road in Ballasalla on June 21 last year.

Pooil Vaaish Black Limestone, whose registered office is at Grenaby Studios, Ballabeg, was represented in court by company director Rosemary Angela Glassey.

Mrs Glassey pleaded guilty to two breaches of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 which was passed in the UK Parliament but applies to the Isle of Man.

Mr Harvey’s family were present in the public gallery to witness the sentencing.

Prosecuting Advocate James Robinson told the court that Mr Harvey and a co-worker had been moving a slab of granite from a yard to a workshop at 8.45 am on the day in question.

In preparation to lift it, they were getting lifting accessories to attach to a forklift truck.

They were said to have pulled the slab from a leaning position to upright, then put a wedge in place to create a gap for a hoisting clamp to go on the edge of the slab.

Mr Harvey was said to have been holding the slab while his co-worker went to get the truck.

It was said that his co-worker then heard a noise and turned to see Mr Harvey with half of the slab on his stomach and lower body.

An ambulance was called but Mr Harvey was pronounced dead at 10.36am.

The court heard that the straps securing the granite slabs on their frame were not in the correct position according to health and safety regulations, a condition that was changed in 2010.

The firm’s defence advocate, Peter Russell, said the company had not been aware of the alert and had never secured straps vertically.

In a statement from the victim’s mother, read by the prosecuting advocate, the court heard that Mr Harvey was a ‘loving, caring and compassionate human being’ and an ‘absolute joy to be around.’


The court also heard that Mr Harvey was an ex-soldier and served in the army for eight years, in countries such as Italy and the Falklands.

In her statement, Mr Harvey’s mother said: ‘I was a proud mother for only 30 years and 156 days.

‘Now I have nothing, I have a pain in my chest that will never leave me.

‘My heart has been broken and will never be healed, nothing will fill that void.

‘The day he left my world got very small,’ she added.

Sentencing the firm Deemster Graeme Cook said that loss of life was the ‘worst thing that can happen’, especially when it involved a young man.

On giving Pooil Vaaish its fine, Deemster Cook said: ‘People may well say £60,000 is not what a life is worth, it’s not.

‘No figure that I could fine you could ever bring back Nathan.’

Following the sentencing, he also thanked Mr Harvey’s family and friends in the courtroom for their dignity during the proceedings, saying that such cases were ‘never an easy time’ for those affected by the incident.

Addressing Mrs Glassey in the dock, Deemster Cook said: ‘You’re aware that your company took this man’s life and that will live with you.’