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UNTRAINED WORKMAN ERECTED DANGEROUS SCAFFOLDING

Scaffolder prosecuted after ignoring order to undertake safety training 

A Plymouth man has been prosecuted for erecting dangerous scaffolding after he ignored an order to undertake safety training. HSE visited a residential property on 16 March 2009 and found several basic safety failings in scaffolding erected by Arthur John Tucker for roofing work.

The scaffold was provided with only one guard rail and an unsecured scaffold pole was resting on a broken concrete block wall. In addition, fall arrest systems were not used during erection of the scaffold.

HSE prohibited the work and Mr Tucker was served with an improvement notice to undertake training in scaffolding safety. Despite these orders inspectors returning to the site found Mr Tucker had failed to carry out the training.

Proper training in scaffolding techniques required

Mr Tucker, of Woolwell, Plymouth pleaded guilty to contravening the requirements of an Improvement Notice to provide sufficient training for himself and his employee under Section 33 (1) (g) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

He was given a conditional discharge and ordered to pay £2,108 in costs. The magistrates also ordered Mr Tucker to complete the additional training for himself and his employees within 18 months of the hearing.

After sentencing, HSE Inspector, Barry Trudgian, said:

“It is absolutely imperative that scaffolding is erected safely by well trained workers to avoid often catastrophic incidents.

Mr Tucker not only illustrated his lack of professionalism when the scaffolding was erected but he then ignored a legal order intended to increase his competence. He has found today that compliance with these notices is compulsory, not optional.

Proper training in scaffolding techniques would have easily avoided the basic mistakes made and created a much safer environment for his own workers and the roofers relying on his workmanship.”

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