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REFURB WORK PUT WORKER AND PUBLIC AT RISK

Builder prosecuted after ignoring work at height HSE prohibition notice

A builder has been prosecuted after ignoring a formal HSE Inspector warning to stop working from an unsafe scaffold tower and putting the public in danger. Jack Sanderson and another builder were spotted carrying out work to the roof of a two-storey building in Bacup Lancshire on 26 January 2012.

There were no handrails or toe boards around the platform to prevent falls of some 7m. A Prohibition Notice was issued but three hours later the inspector returned and found both men back on the tower without safety precautions in place.

Accrington Magistrates heard (22 Nov) that Mr Sanderson put his own life and the life of the worker he employed at risk by failing to take measures to prevent falling. The work was adjacent to a row of shops and bus stop thereby putting passers-by at risk of being struck by falling objects.

Defendant given a chance to put things right but failed to take it

Jack Sanderson, of Bear Street, Burnley, pleaded guilty to two breaches of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and one of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. Mr Sanderson, who is currently in prison for another unrelated offence, was fined £2,000 with no costs.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector David Myrtle said:

“Mr Sanderson was given a chance to put things right when he received a Prohibition Notice but he chose to ignore it. He found himself in court as a result.

Several lives were put at risk because the scaffolding wasn’t safe to use, including the lives of another worker and members of the public doing their shopping on the street below.

This case should act as a warning to those working in the construction industry that if they ignore formal enforcement notices issued by HSE then they are likely to face prosecution.”

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