When news happens, text LT and your photos and videos to 80360. Or contact us by email or phone.
Rossendale grieving dad blamed for son’s death ‘hits bottle’
A MAN who ‘hit the bottle’ after being blamed for the industrial accident which killed his son, was caught more than three times the drink-drive limit.
Louis Bibby, 46, had been the site supervisor and manager when his son James Bibby, 25, and colleague Thomas Elmer, 27, both from Waterfoot, died at a Merseyside wood processing factory in December 2010.
The two men, who had been working for Haslingden-based sub-contractors, Metso, were killed when they were dragged by a conveyor belt into a huge silo machine.
Burnley magistrates heard how Louis Bibby was alleged to have been responsible for the accident. He had been arrested on suspicion of corporate manslaughter and gross negligence and it was only recently that police confirmed they were not taking any action.
The Health and Safety Executive was investigating and Bibby, still grieving for his son, was said to have turned to drink to try and cope.
The defendant fought back tears as his solicitor told the court how he struggled every day and wished he could turn back the clock.
He had been found slumped over the steering wheel of his car at two o’clock on a Sunday afternoon, after a stag weekend in Blackpool.
Police described him as ‘clearly drunk’ when they woke him up and he gave a test which showed 108 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35. The hearing was told since the incident, Bibby realised he had a problem and had sought help from Inspire.
Bibby, of Snowdrop Close, Helmshore, admitted driving with excess alcohol on Burnley Road, Crawshawbooth, on July 15. He was given a two month curfew, between 8pm and 5am and must pay £80 costs. He was banned for 23 months.
The bench chairman told him: “Obviously, you have a very stressful life and the court has sympathy with what’s gone on.”
The defendant had no previous convictions.
Bibby’s lawyer Julie Robertson said he showed considerable remorse and wished to apologise for the offence. She said an inquest into the factory deaths was due to be held next year. The Health and Safety Executive was investigating the accident.
She said: “There is still uncertainty as to whether the defendant will be prosecuted and understandably he is struggling to cope with that.”
Comments are closed on this article.