'DEEPLY concerned' contractors have walked out on Ferguson Marine and plunged completion work on a five-years-late ferry into further disarray following a series of electric shock incidents.

The Health & Safety Executive is set for an emergency visit to the Port Glasgow shipyard this week after all wiring work ground to a halt onboard Glen Sannox amid fears for staff employed by industrial engineering solutions firm BGEN. 

A total of three incidents have occurred at the yard in recent weeks whereby contract workers have come into contact with live cabling, which has resulted in them being taken to hospital.

A Ferguson's source told the Telegraph that workers have 'lost trust' in the yard to ensure their safety amid the drive to finally have Glen Sannox ready for service.  

The source, speaking on condition of anonymity, claimed that the incidents were the result of sections of the Glen Sannox being powered up when they were supposed to be dead.

He said: “One of the contractors was listing a coil of cable and it was live, he put his snips through it and got an electric shock.

“He went to cut the cable and his snips blew up, he got a shock.

“The panel he was working with should never have been powered up."

It is the second time that BGEN staff have downed tools after staff received electric shocks.

Work was initially halted in the middle of last month following the first incident.

BGEN employees returned to the yard on July 24 after safety discussions but it is understood that there has since been a further two incidents - on August 1 and 10.

Our Ferguson's source said: “They assured us it was safe to go back on, they’d taken all the correct measures and had satisfied our safety team.

“Questions are being asked about the whole situation now that it’s happened again.

“There are coils of cable everywhere and until there have been assurances that they’re all dead there shouldn’t be anyone back on that ship.  

“Processes have been put in place which would work if everyone adhered to them, but people are working out of process and powering up things which shouldn’t be, which will endanger people.

“We’ve had incidents in the past where we’ve found cables that are live that shouldn’t be live, and we’ve reported it.

“The boys have lost confidence and it’s becoming a major issue. It’s got to the stage where trust is gone.”

Ferguson chief executive David Tydeman confirmed to the Telegraph that the Health & Safety Executive is to visit the yard on Wednesday.

Mr Tydeman said: “We welcome this and will learn from their counsel as we work to improve health and safety within the yard. 

“In preparation for this visit, we are conducting a full risk audit of the sequencing of work across all disciplines, the outcome of which will be shared with HSE.

“We have already introduced a number of additional health and safety measures:  voltage detectors have been issued and a revised permit and control system has been jointly agreed with BGEN, FMPG [the yard] and trade unions."

Mr Tydeman added: “It was also a planned and collective decision to power down the ship and restart in stages over the coming weeks, taking the opportunity to replan the sequencing of electrical work carefully with the other systems being commissioned.

“The delivery of Glen Sannox remains our key priority.

“We will review the impact of this ‘pause’ in parallel with the recent issues raised by the Maritime & Coastguard Agency and plan to update on timings before the end of August.”

BGEN chairman John Sugden declared that his firm's electrical work will not restart until 'all parties, including our colleagues on site, are happy with the proposed controls to avoid a recurrence'. 

Mr Sugden said: “On Thursday August 10 a colleague suffered a minor electric shock.  While unharmed, he was taken to hospital for precautionary tests.

“This is the third incident to occur in a relatively short amount of time, and we would like to state that we are treating each occurrence very seriously.

“Initial findings in this case indicate that this was a result of human error, not connected to the previous incidents, and we’re working with all parties on site to see how this can be avoided in the future.

"We’ll also be looking to introduce any enhanced safety procedures which are recommended following completion of the investigation."