West Suffolk/Norfolk: Police drop manslaughter proceedings following death of four friends in industrial accident


- Credit: Archant

POLICE said today that they will not be proceeding with any manslaughter charges following the deaths of four Suffolk men who were crushed to death when a steel structure collapsed on top of them.

Thomas and Daniel Hazelton and their colleagues Peter Johnson (PJ) and Adam Taylor died in January, 2011, while they were working on at Claxton Engineering Services Ltd, in Great Yarmouth.

Tom, 26, and his 30-year-old brother, along with PJ, 42, all came from Stanton, and Adam, 28, from Rickinghall, and it prompted the setting up of the Four Friends Fund by the East Anglian Daily which has raised £36,000.

The deaths of the four men rocked their tight-knit communities and residents and businesses rallied round to support the families in whatever way they could and it prompted a flood of donations towards the fund.

A memorial has already been created in Rickinghall and was unveiled just a few days after the second anniversary of the tragedy and work started today on another in Stanton which is to be at the rear of The Cock pub, in The Street.

A statement issued by Norfolk Police said: “Following extensive consultation with CPS Special Casework Division a decision has been made not to proceed with any manslaughter offences against any individual or company.

“Officers from the Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team will now liaise with the coroner in respect of inquests and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to support any proceedings they may be considering.”

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Meanwhile, a spokesman for the HSE, added: “Following the Crown Prosecution Service’s decision the Health and Safety Executive is reviewing its investigation and will now liaise with the coroner.’