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SOLAR PANEL INSTALLER FELL THROUGH FRAGILE ROOF

Firm fined after teenager has miraculous escape following six metre fall

WDS Green Energy Ltd has been prosecuted for safety failings after a teenage worker fell nearly 6m through a fragile roof in Wales. Joshua Harry, 18 escaped with severe bruising to his back following the incident at Cantref Adventure Farm on 28 February 2012. He was one of a team of employees installing solar panels.

Brecon Magistrates heard (12 Sept) that an investigation by HSE revealed that the company had not carried out adequate planning for the work and had failed to provide any fall protection. Investigators found no safety measures on site e.g. crawling boards, safety netting or harnesses which could have prevented or arrested a fall.

Significant number of fatal and near fatal accidents falling through fragile roofs

WDS Green Energy Ltd of Court Road, Bridgend pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined £12,000 and ordered to pay £4,181 in costs.

After the hearing, HSE Inspector David Kirkpatrick said:

“Mr Harry is a very lucky man indeed not to have suffered far worse injuries, or even death, in a fall from this height. Even when plans are made for working at height, employers must ensure these are carried out properly on site.

The steps for preventing workers from falling through fragile roofs are simple and are well known in the construction and maintenance industry. In Wales we have seen a significant number of fatal and near fatal accidents when workers have fallen through fragile roofs on agricultural buildings or industrial units.

The sad fact is that there are always simple and cost effective measures that could have been taken to prevent those falls.”

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One Response to “SOLAR PANEL INSTALLER FELL THROUGH FRAGILE ROOF”

  1. HSE ENFORCEMENT UPDATE 21st NOVEMBER 2012 | PP Construction Safety News Desk Says:

    […] SOLAR PANEL INSTALLER FELL THROUGH FRAGILE ROOF […]