Birmingham, United Kingdom (17th October, 2012) – Trucks Direct UK Ltd, one of the UK’s largest suppliers of quality used forklift trucks for sale and hire, comment as a Heathrow Airport forklift truck driver is fined after crashing his vehicle into the rear of a Scandinavian Airlines Airbus 321, causing an estimated £1.2 million worth of damage.
In his defence, forklift truck driver 60-year-old Dennis Jackson said that he had forgotten how large the vehicle was when he sliced through the tail of the aircraft.
Mr Jackson’s defence lawyer, Bethan Charnley, explained that her client was responsible after forgetting that he was operating the biggest type of vehicle, commenting: “My client had been asked to take a high loader, which had been used to load a car into the plane’s hold, back to where it was usually parked.
“However, Mr Jackson is used to driving the medium sized forklifts and forgot that he was driving a much larger vehicle than usual,” she continued.
She also said: “Mr Jackson was not driving in any way dangerously and the accident happened in a matter of seconds.” Ms Charnley said that her client was devastated by what had occurred and that up until now his record had been exemplary since being employed by Dnata in 2006.
Ms Charnley also noted that airport owner BAA has issued guidelines for cones to be set out to clearly mark which areas are safe to drive in. However, these guidelines weren’t followed.
Marilyn Levene, chair of the bench, agreed that the incident was a genuine mistake after a momentary lapse of concentration.
Although not fined for the total costs, Dennis was fined a week’s wages, in addition £85 in prosecution costs and a victim surcharge of £15.
Simon Watkins of Trucks Direct commented: “Whilst we can empathise with Mr Jackson’s momentary lapse in concentration, it is important to note that teaching the various techniques involved when operating forklifts of different sizes and load capacities is an integral part of forklift operation training.
“This incident highlights the need for ongoing training updates to ensure that all drivers are fully aware of how different-sized vehicles require particular driving styles. Bi-annual refresher courses, for example, could help to avoid this sort of accident occurring again in the future.”
For more information on Trucks Direct UK’s products and services, please visit http://www.trucksdirectuk.co.uk or call 0121 344 4744.
About Trucks Direct UK Ltd:
Centrally-located in the West Midlands, Trucks Direct is one of the country’s largest suppliers of quality used forklift trucks, with many years of trading and thousands of satisfied customers throughout the UK and overseas. The company’s long history and extensive contacts in the industry enable them to offer the highest-quality vehicles at the lowest prices. Trucks Direct’s customers range from small businesses acquiring their first forklift, up to some of the country’s largest plc companies, and they employ qualified engineers to ensure that each vehicle sold is thoroughly checked and delivered with 12 months L.O.L.E.R. certification.
Trucks Direct, Gailey Park
Three Acre House
Walsall Road,Perry Barr
Zip: B42 1TP
Tel: 0121 344 4744