• STV
  • MySTV

Queensferry Crossing worker recalls colleague's death

Lucas Hollis, 24, says he ran to help 62-year-old John Cousin after he was hit by a crane.

Inquiry: Relatives of Mr Cousin attended the hearing.
Inquiry: Relatives of Mr Cousin attended the hearing.

A construction worker has told how he ran to help a colleague who was fatally injured while working on the Queensferry Crossing.

Lucas Holis, 24, described how he was with John Cousin on the north tower deck of the bridge when the fitter was struck by part of a crane on April 28, 2016.

A fatal accident inquiry into the death of Mr Cousin, 62, began at Stirling Sheriff Court on Monday.

Relatives of Mr Cousin, who was from Northumberland, were at the inquiry to hear evidence.

Mr Holis, a steel workers ganger from the Czech Republic, told the inquiry the crane in question had been out of use the day before the accident due to a burst hose that was leaking hydraulic oil.

The machine was placed in an exclusion zone and crane company GGR Group was contacted to fix it, he said.

On the morning of the accident, Mr Holis said he was sent to collect GGR fitter Stewart Clark by boat to bring him to the bridge and repair the machine.

The witness said Mr Clark had lowered the boom while working on the crane, causing the oil to leak "more and more," and as a result he went to fetch absorbent granules.

'I heard the noise, I heard steel on steel, when it starts scraping.
Lucas Holis, witness

Mr Holis said they were joined by Mr Cousin, who he had met a few times, as the fitter came over "to have a look, probably".

He said: "Normally when something happens we help each other out, we help out to get a job done,"

The two men were "just guys talking to each other and laughing," he recalled.

He said he was spreading the absorbent granules behind the crane when "I heard the noise, I heard steel on steel, when it starts scraping".

"I heard the noise and just turned around," he added.

At the time he said Mr Clark was on the middle of the crane while Mr Cousin was somewhere at the front of the boom holding his hands up.

'I saw John Cousin lying there on the deck and I just ran to him straight away.'
Lucas Holis, witness

He said: "It fell over on him. I think (Mr Clark) was still on the crane. I asked him if he's all right and he answered.

"I saw John Cousin lying there on the deck and I just ran to him straight away."

Mr Holis, a first aider, agreed the fitter had "very clear injuries" and put him in the recovery position.

He said: "I just shouted for help. I could see the blood and everything, I just shouted for help."

The crane's fly jib was on the ground but he did not see how it had become detached, he told the inquiry.

The witness said the injured man was evacuated from the bridge by boat.

The inquiry, before Sheriff William Gilchrist, was adjourned and will continue at 10am on Tuesday.

Construction of the £1.3bn new bridge across the Forth began in 2011 and it was officially opened by the Queen in September.

Download: The STV News app is Scotland's favourite and is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from Google Play. Download it today and continue to enjoy STV News wherever you are.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
ShowHide
Forgot password?
This field is required. At least 6 characters please. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
At least 6 characters please
ShowHide
This field is required. At least 6 characters please.
You have to be 16 or over to join
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
Type your full postcode and select your address This field is required. It doesn't look like you've entered a valid postcode. Can't find your address? Confirm the details you've given us are correct by clicking here

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, including our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. Any issues contact us.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.

Thanks

We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.

Oops!

Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.

Oops!

Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.

http://shows.stv.tv/real-heroes/voting

Oops!

Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.