Two companies and two men have indicated not guilty pleas to health and safety charges brought after five workers died when a wall collapsed at a metal recycling plant.
The Health and Safety Executive is prosecuting Birmingham-based firms Ensco 10101 Ltd and Hawkeswood Metal Recycling Ltd after a long-running inquiry into the fatalities in the Nechells area of the city on July 7 2016.
Ensco 10101 is accused of failing to discharge a duty to a person other than an employee in July 2016, and failing “to ensure, so far as was reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare” of all its employees.
Hawkeswood Metal Recycling faces a charge alleging that it “failed to conduct your undertaking in such a way to ensure” those not in its employment were not exposed to risks, and a second count relating to the safety of employees.
The companies, both of Riverside Works, Trevor Street, Nechells, indicated not guilty pleas through their lawyers at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court.
Wayne Anthony Hawkeswood, 50, whose address was given in court documents as Riverside Works, faces four alleged breaches of the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act, including two which allege an “offence was committed with your consent or connivance or was attributable to your neglect”.
Graham John Woodhouse, 54, also of Riverside Works, has been charged with four offences related to his duties as an employer on or about July 7 2016.
Five workers, all originally from Senegal and the Gambia, died when a concrete partition wall gave way.
Labourers Almamo Jammeh, 45, Ousmane Diaby, 39, Bangally Dukuray, 55, Saibo Sillah, 42, and 49-year-old Mahamadou Jagana were all pronounced dead at the scene after the wall and part of a stored pile of 263 tons of metal ingots collapsed.
A sixth man suffered serious injuries.
All four defendants indicated not guilty pleas on Friday and the case was transferred to Birmingham Crown Court for a further hearing on June 11.