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UNSAFE DISMANTLING OF STEEL FRAMED BUILDING

Workmen stepped out of cherry-picker provided for safe access to job 

Master Concrete Limited of Feltham, London has been ordered to pay almost £29k in fines and prosecution costs after a man was injured falling more than 4m from a roof suffering a broken collarbone, six fractured ribs and a head wound.

Alfie Deville 59, from Uxbridge, was dismantling a steel framed building with three other men on 30 April 2009.

Two men went onto the roof to unscrew panels before removing them. Mr Deville stepped on a panel he had previously unscrewed but not removed.

The panel gave way and Mr Deville fell to the ground below.

The court heard the men were provided with a mobile elevating work platform (mewp) to enable the work to be carried out without stepping onto the roof. However, the workmen left the basket of the cherry picker.

Workmen untrained and lacked experience

The HSE investigation showed Master Concrete had failed to “properly plan the work and identify or address any hazards associated with the dismantling of the building”.

The court heard the workers involved in the dismantling had no training or experience of this type of work.

After the incident a prohibition notice was served preventing further dismantling of the building until the work was properly planned and carried out by competent persons. However, this was ignored and the building was subsequently demolished by untrained employees.

HSE prosecuted HSE Inspector Loraine Charles said:

“If the work had been properly planned and carried out by workers who were competent to do it, then this needless injury could have been avoided.

Master Concrete Limited had a responsibility to ensure that there was a safe system of work in place for the dismantling of this structure, which it did not fulfil, and as a result Alfie Deville sustained a serious injury.”

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