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TIMBER FRAME FIRM FINED FOLLOWING FALL BETWEEN JOISTS

Soft landing system provided to mitigate fall was not used effectively

RG Stones (Buildings) Ltd has been fined after an employee suffered multiple injuries when he fell from a canopy at a Shropshire school.

The company, which constucts modular timber buildings, was replacing the canopy between two temporary buildings at Lakelands School on Oswestry Road in Ellesmere when the incident happened on 8 August 2011.

William Phillips, aged 52, was standing on the canopy with two colleagues when he fell 3m between timber joists onto the concrete floor below fracturing his back, breastbone, six ribs and right wrist. He has still not been able to return to work.

Shrewsbury Magistrates heard (10 August) that HSE investigators found a lack of edge protection to prevent a fall. Two ‘soft landing bags’ had been placed on the floor to mitigate the effect of any fall but neither were in the area where the work was being carried out.

Shame that ‘bags’ not in the area where most needed

RG Stones (Buildings) ltd, of Grosvenor Road, Wrexham, Clwyd, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 for failing to protect Mr Phillips. The company was fined £6,500 and ordered to pay costs of £3,105.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Guy Dale said:

“This incident was entirely preventable. The company had obviously appreciated the risks of a fall, as shown by the provision of the landing bags, but it’s a shame they didn’t think to put them under the area it was most needed.

Work at height is a high risk activity and needs to be properly planned. Had that happened, a man would not have been left with debilitating injuries.”

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2 Responses to “TIMBER FRAME FIRM FINED FOLLOWING FALL BETWEEN JOISTS”

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  2. HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 17th OCTOBER 2012 | PP Construction Safety News Desk Says:

    […] TIMBER FRAME FIRM FINED FOLLOWING FALL BETWEEN JOISTS […]