The Health Service Executive has been sent forward for trial accused of breaking health and safety regulations over the death of a Cavan paramedic who fell out of the side door of the moving ambulance he was working in.
Married father-of-six, 43-year-old Simon Sexton from Carricknashoke, Clifferna, Stradone, was working on a patient transfer call-out, travelling from Cavan to Dublin on June 3, 2010, when the accident occurred on the N3 near Stradone shortly before 4pm.
Mr Sexton, a well-known charity worker and involved in youth football in the area, died a short time later. Following his death, three separate investigations were launched including a full examination of the ambulance and the scene by the Health and Safety Authority.
In the case "DPP V HSE" listed before Dublin District Court on Monday, the HSE has now been brought to court accused of failing to ensure the safety of employees in the workplace.
The DPP had consented to the HSE being sent forward for trial on indictment on a total of seven charges, all under sections of the Health and Safety and Welfare at Work Act 2005. These include ensuring the safety of equipment being used, failure to identify a risk or hazard in the work place as well as failing to provide the information, instruction, training and supervision necessary to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the safety, health, and welfare at work of employees.
The HSE is also accused of not providing systems of work that are planned, organised, performed, maintained and revised as appropriate so as to be safe and without risk to health, charges which relate to the provision of training adapted to take account of new or changed risks to safety, health and welfare at work.
A book of evidence was served to the HSE legal team and Felix McEnroy SC said the State had provided disclosure of material, with further disclosure expected.
The HSE has not yet indicated how it will plead.
Judge John O'Neill adjourned the case for hearing to the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court, next month, March 22.