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Partner of fish farm worker crushed by boats makes International Workers’ Memorial Day pledge to ‘fight like hell for the living’

The partner of a fish farm worker who died after being crushed between two boats has made a call for big business to put peoples’ lives before company profits.

Clive Hendry, 58, had stepped from the deck of the moving boat to the barge’s access ladder when the accident happened at a salmon farm at Ardintoul, Glenshiel in 2020.

A colleague tried to grab him and stop the 58-year-old from entering the water, but he slipped out of his lifejacket.

Marine accident investigators later ordered fish farm operators Mowi to make a number of safety improvements.

Now his partner is using International Workers’ Memorial Day to call for changes in legislation to make sure those working at sea have all the training they need to avoid further tragedy.

Catriona Lockhart, from Dornie, will address the crowd at the Inverness and District Trades Union Councils memorial event on Huntly Street at 12.30pm today.

‘Clive loved his beloved fish farm’

Ms Lockhart wants to see changes to maritime law that will make sure man overboard and boat-to-boat transfers are discussed between crews at least every three months, and at monthly tool box talks.

During what is likely to be an emotional address, Ms Lockhart will say: “I am here today on International Workers’ Memorial Day to remember the dead and to lay a wreath for my partner of 28 years Clive Hendry.

“Clive worked for a giant salmon producer for more than 12 years on the Ardintoul site by Kyle of Lochalsh.

“Clive was the assistant manager and was regarded as a hard-working member of the team and was respected for his experience. Clive loved his beloved fish farm.”

Catriona Lockhart will speak at a ceremony in Inverness today about what should change in light of the death of her partner Clive Hendry.

After reading the Marine Accident Investigation Board report into Mr Hendry’s death, she feels much can be done to improve the safety of those working at sea.

She will continue: “On February 18 2020 Clive was finishing a chemical treatment on a pen of salmon. He finished this treatment and asked the skipper of one of the work boats the Beinn Na Caillich to take him to the feed barge for his lunch.

“This was to be Clive’s last and final voyage.

“There was a fender missing on the feed barge. It had been reported but not replaced so the skipper decided to do the touch and go method which they did regularly.

“Clive stepped across to the access ladder of the feed barge and the Beinn Na Caillich crushed him against the barge.

“Clive was shouting for help while hanging on to the ladders for his life.

“A member of his team came and tried to help, but instead pulled his life jacket off by mistake. Clive fell into the loch.”

‘Clive had no chance’

The MAIB report ruled Mr Hendry died from drowning after being crushed between the boat and the barge.

Ms Lockhart believes that there are very few regulations around the implementation and training of fish farm works and she is calling for regular man overboard routines on boats – and that companies must ensure its workers have the very best life jackets that meet the highest of national standards.

“Clive had no chance,” she will say.

“It haunts me that Clive could have been saved if marine laws were tightened so that big companies put their staff’s lives before profit.

“I am here today to remember the dead, and to fight like hell for the living.

“On February 18 my life ended as my everything walked out our kitchen door off to work. I am only in my second year in my fight for justice and to work for change in the workplace for my Clive.”

‘They fight for the dead, and the living’

She will thank Scottish Hazards, which provides free information, advice and training on workplace safety, for their support so far.

“They fight for the dead, and the living,” she shall tell the crowd.

“I don’t want anyone else to go through this living hell.

“We need to stop death in the workplace.”

Munro Ross, treasurer of Inverness and District Trades Union Council, said the story of Ms Lockhart’s battle to get appropriate recognition for the need to strengthen corporate manslaughter laws and health and safety laws was very strong and sad.

“Workers’ Memorial Day is an opportunity to remember those who went to work and either did not return due to death, or who suffered a severe illness or injury,” he said.

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