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FARM BUILDING SUPPLIER IN COURT WITH CONTRACTOR

Fall from makeshift access platform triggers double prosecution

Waddington Buildings Limited and Up & Cover (Stephen Ramsey T/A) have been fined after a worker was injured in a fall whilst working on construction of a new farm building.

 Up & Cover were contracted by Waddington Buildings Limited to carry out steel erection and cladding work on the building at Brierton North Farm, Billingham when the incident occurred on 29 August 2010.

Teesside Magistrate heard the worker was standing on a pallet fitted to a fork attachment of a tractor at heights of over 4m to measure and fit guttering to the building. The tractor, operated by Stephen Ramsey, unexpectedly moved with the pallet in a raised position causing the worker to lose his balance and fall to the ground. He spent 15 days in hospital after his left heel was smashed and his right ankle was fractured. Treatment is still ongoing.

Main contractor failed to check competence of others

HSE’s investigation revealed Mr Ramsey failed to carry out the work safely and Waddington Buildings Limited had failed to establish whether work carried out on their behalf would be done safely and whether Stephen Ramsey was competent to do the work.

Waddington Buildings Limited, of Station Road, Brompton on Swale, pleaded guilty breaching HSW Act Section 3 and was fined £3,500 and ordered to pay costs of £900. Contractor Stephen Ramsey of Bedale, pleaded guilty to breaching the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was fined £1,000 and ordered to pay £250 costs.

After the case, HSE Inspector Natalie Wright said:

“Falls from height are known to be one of the largest causes of death and serious injury in both the construction and agriculture industries.

This incident could and should have been avoided and demonstrates how important it is for work at height to be properly planned and safely undertaken. There are many well known methods of fall prevention that would have been reasonably practicable to use in this situation, such as a mobile elevated working platform.

The incident also highlights the need for companies engaging subcontractors to make appropriate enquiries to determine the competence of those subcontractors.”

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One Response to “FARM BUILDING SUPPLIER IN COURT WITH CONTRACTOR”

  1. HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 1st FEBRUARY 2012 | PP Construction Safety News Desk Says:

    […] Ramsey – fall risk: £1,000; […]