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FATHER PROSECUTED FOR PUTTING SON AT RISK

Demo contractor fined after son worked on roof without scaffolding

Leicester Crown Court today heard that during  January 2008, Westwise Demolition (Ivan Pope T/A) exposed workmen to the risk of falling whilst demolishing a former public house in Lincoln.

The demolition involved piece-by-piece removal of the two storey pub’s roof tiles.

Workers spotted dismantling roof from excavator bucket

Ivan Pope was prosecuted after two men were spotted dismantling the roof working from the “upturned bucket of an excavator”

One worker was perched on the roof, removing tiles and passing them to the son of the defendant who was standing in the excavator bucket level with the edge of the roof.

When the bucket was filled with tiles Mr Pope jnr climbed onto the roof. The bucket was then lowered and emptied before being raised again for the process to be repeated.

There was no scaffolding to prevent falls from the roof edge and nothing to protect those working below from any tiles dropped or dislodged during these activities.

Foolhardy system put life of son a risk

Mr Pope, of Wisbech, Cambs pleaded guilty to breaching HSW Act 1974 Section 3 – failing to ensure people not in his employment were not exposed to risks to their safety.

He was fined £6k and ordered to pay over £13k in prosection costs costs by Leicester Crown Court.

After the hearing, HSE Inspector Martin Giles said: “This was foolhardy to say the least and could so easily have resulted in serious injury or even death. It is particularly disturbing that Mr Pope was willing to risk the life of his own son by failing to put such basic safety requirements in place.

“Working at height remains one of the greatest dangers to construction workers. Many incidents can be avoided if contractors identify a safe way of tackling a job, provide all necessary protective equipment and ensure that workers, sub-contractors or casual employees are fully trained and properly supervised.

“Demolition must be properly planned and, in this case, providing adequate scaffolding or a proper mobile elevating work platform would have allowed this work to be done safely.”

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