Pirate FM News

Keep up to date with the latest news delivered direct to your Inbox.

M5 Crash: Fireworks Organiser Acquitted

m5 crash
Delicious Submit this page to reddit

5:31am 11th December 2013
(Updated 5:31am 11th December 2013)

The organiser of a fireworks display has been cleared of breaching health and safety laws after the death of a Gunnislake dad in a motorway pile up.

Kye Thomas was among seven people who lost their lives on the M5 back in 2011.

Mr Thomas was not the only person with a connection to the Duchy.

He was a driver for the company that owns Ginsters and lost his life along with colleague Terry Brice in the 34 vehicle pile-up.

Michael Barton and daughter Maggie were on their way home from a funeral in Penzance.

A judge at Bristol Crown Court ordered the jury to find 51 year old Geoffrey Counsell from Ashill not guilty.

Geoffrey Counsell, 51, said he believed the decision to prosecute him was "motivated by a desire to find someone to blame for this terrible accident, simply for the sake of doing so".

Speaking outside Bristol Crown Court, Mr Counsell expressed his sympathy to all those affected by the "terrible crash" on the M5 on November 4, 2011.

"I have been through an appalling experience over the last two years, yet I recognise that my misfortune is as nothing compared with that of those bereaved and injured as a result of that accident," he said.

A judge directed the jury to find Mr Counsell not guilty of a single charge of failing to ensure the safety of others contrary to the Health and Safety at Work Act.

The charge alleged that Mr Counsell, of Ashill in Somerset, failed to ensure he operated the firework display so as to ensure, as far as was reasonably practicable, that others who might be affected were not exposed to risks to their health and safety.

Mr Counsell was originally charged with seven counts of manslaughter, but they were dropped earlier this year and instead he faced the health and safety charge.

Seven people died in a massive motorway pile-up involving more than 30 cars when they were engulfed in a thick fog on a section of the M5 near Taunton.

Mr Justice Simon ruled that Mr Counsell had "no case to answer" following an application from the defendant's barrister made at the halfway point in the trial.

The judge said the prosecution's case was based on "hindsight" and there was not sufficient evidence to show that Mr Counsell ought to have foreseen that smoke from the display, could have drifted and mixed with fog to create thick smog.

5:31am 11th December 2013

Share This Story

Delicious Submit this page to reddit
Suggested articles
a390 damage 3

PHOTOS: Appeal after fatal crash near St Austell

A car smashed into a garage forecourt on Monday

police tape 3

Biker caught in rush-hour crash

It shut a stretch between Redruth and Penryn

Most read
a390 crash

Woman dies after crash near St Austell

A car hit others at a garage forecourt on the A390

sunbathing

WATCH: Is Cornwall in for another heatwave?

The Met Office forecast for July looks promising!

Top articles

'Serious sex assault' in Newquay

Cornwall News: A woman was allegedly punched and blacked out

Pirate FM Cornwall News Update - 7th January 2016

Cornwall Video News: Officials say they’re holding talks to find new jobs for hundreds of workers in Bodmin.

Government defeats Labour's bid to end public sector pay cap

National News: The Government has defeated a Labour bid to end the cap on public sector pay in the first parliamentary test of the Tory-DUP deal.

UPDATE: Body found on popular Cornish beach

Cornwall News: Police say death at Watergate Bay 'isn't suspicious'

'Kill Jay Z'? The king is back, but different

Showbiz News: With just a few days left until the release of the rapper's highly anticipated new album, JAY-Z has reinvented himself.

Action film star staged Venezuela helicopter attack on government buildings

World News: A police officer who flew a helicopter over Venezuelan government buildings firing shots and throwing grenades has been identified as the star of a 2015 action movie.

'Angry' Cristiano Ronaldo expected to stay at Real Madrid

Sports News: Cristiano Ronaldo is "angry" but Real Madrid president Florentino Perez says he expects him to stay at the club.

Passenger's fury as airport security guard poses with her lobster

Strange News: A businesswoman has criticised an airport security guard for rifling through her luggage and having a photograph taken with one of her live lobsters.

Newer article

Schoolgirl Approached in Looe

Cornwall News: Police hunt a man who approached 10 year old girl

Older article

Unexplained Death in Truro

Cornwall News: Police investigating after man's body discovered

Cornwall's Pirate FMPirate Extra Footer LogoEscape to Cornwall radioLoveCornwall.com - The Cornish Business DirectoryPirate Education and Training

 

© Copyright Pirate FM

Pirate FM cannot be held responsible for the content of external links.