An egg company in Leicestershire has been fined £233,000 after one of its workers was crushed to death by an HGV attempting “a complex manoeuvre” at its Loughborough premises.

Sunrise Poultry Farms was found to have wholly inadequate measures in place for segregating pedestrians and moving vehicles following the death of 19-year-old Ben Spencer in April 2021.

Spencer had only been working at the company for two weeks when the incident occurred. According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the lorry was undertaking a complex manoeuvre towards a narrow thoroughfare as the worker was walking towards it.

He was crushed between the vehicle and a wall.

Sunrise Poultry Farms pleaded guilty to breaching the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations and as well as the fine, it was ordered to pay costs of £8,841 at a hearing in Leicester Magistrates’ Court this week.

Speaking about her grief, Spencer’s mum Tracy said: “I still can’t go in Ben’s bedroom.

“It’s still the same as the last day he went to work. I can’t bring myself to make the bed and have tied the door shut so the dog can’t go in there. I have tried to make myself go in there, but I just can’t walk across the threshold.

“I cry when I leave the house and I cry when I get back, because he’s not here. I hear noises and look up expecting to see Ben coming round the back.”

HSE inspector Alex Nayar said: “Our thoughts today are with Ben’s family and friends.

“He was at the start of his working life. He should have returned home safely to them at the end of his working day, but because of the failings of Sunrise Poultry Farms, he did not.

“Ben’s death could have easily been prevented if they had adequately assessed and controlled the risks associated with workplace transport, a leading cause of death in the workplace.”