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    DEVELOPER AVOIDED RESPONSIBILITY ONCE TOO OFTEN

    Fall from tower scaffold left migrant worker with life-threatening injuries 

    Nabiganj Investment Company Limited has been ordered to pay over £42,000 in fines and prosecution costs after a migrant worker suffered severe head injuries when he fell 5m from scaffolding at London warehouse in 2009.

    The 46-year-old Chinese migrant worker fell from an incomplete tower scaffold being used to remove floor beams from two levels of a warehouse. He suffered life-threatening injuries to his head, pelvis and spine and can now only walk with difficulty.

    The company failed to implement a number of measures that could have prevented the incident. In addition, HSE inspectors found asbestos in debris from the demolition work and discovered that no asbestos survey had been conducted prior to work starting.

    The court heard that HSE had taken enforcement action on a previous occasion relating to other sites, including two Improvement Notices regarding failure to comply with client duties under CDM Regulations 2007 and two Prohibition Notices concerning work at height.

    Defendant was “avoiding responsibilities”

    City of London Magistrates heard that at least six Chinese migrant workers were demolishing the floors and moving debris around, potentially causing exposure to asbestos fibres. Nabiganj Investment Company Limited of Alexandra Park Road, London pleaded guilty to breaching CDM Regulations 2007 : Regulations 4(1)(a), 14(1) and 16(1).

    The company was fined £37,500 and ordered to pay prosecution costs of £5,459.90.

    Speaking after the sentence, HSE Inspector Eileen Gascoigne said:

    “A vulnerable worker was left with devastating injuries as a result of the consistently poor attitude to safety this company has displayed.

    This is an experienced property development firm, it has had previous enforcement action taken against it by the HSE relating to similar issues during construction work.

    Once again in avoiding its responsibilities, it has put the safety and health of at least six vulnerable workers at unnecessary risk.”

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