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Grampian TV (Scotland): FAI to be held into oil platform deaths

Grampian TV (Scotland): FAI to be held into oil platform deaths

“Earlier this year Shell was fined a record nine hundred thousand pounds after admitting health and safety breaches. The Sheriff who heard the case said there had been a “substantial catalogue” of errors.”

Posted Wednesday 20 July 2005

The decision not to hold a fatal accident inquiry into the deaths of two men on a North Sea platform has been overturned by Scotland’s senior law officer. The Lord Advocate has given the go ahead for the probe into the deaths on Shell’s Brant Bravo in September two thousand and three.

In September 2003, 22 year old Sean McCue from Fife and 45 year old Keith Moncrieff from Invergowrie near Dundee died after being overcome by gas while working on one of the platform’s legs. Mr Moncrief was an experienced worker and had previously appeared in an offshore safety video.

Earlier this year Shell was fined a record nine hundred thousand pounds after admitting health and safety breaches. The Sheriff who heard the case said there had been a “substantial catalogue” of errors. But to the anger of the men’s families and oil unions pleas for a Fatal Accident Inquiry were rejected.

But now the country’s most senior law officer the Lord Advocate Colin Boyd has stepped in to overturn that decision. In a statement the Crown Office said the Lord Advocate had concluded, that it was in the wider public interest for a Fatal Accident Inquiry to be held. The decision has been welcomed by the men’s families.

In a brief statement Shell said it was aware the Lord Advocate had reversed an earlier decision not to hold an Fatal Accident Inquiry into the deaths of both men. A spokeswoman said the company had not yet been notified of a date for that inquiry and she could not comment further.

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