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LOCAL AUTHORITY SAFETY TRAINING FOUND WANTING

Key fragile roof safety measures left to the workers’ own judgment

The Moray Council has been fined after a worker was seriously injured when he fell through a garage roof light at a council depot in May 2011.

Elgin Sheriff Court was told (11 July) that the injured man was one of two workers who access the roof using a ladder. They were standing on scaffolding batons placed onto cement sheets on either side of the roof lights.

One of the men lost his balance and fell 3m head first through the roof light to the concrete floor below. He suffered serious injuries to the right side of his body including a broken pelvis, collar bone and numerous ribs. 

HSE investigators found the roof light was fragile and the work was undertaken with insufficient measures to prevent a fall through or from the roof. 

No information or supervision to ensure work carried out safely

The Moray Council, of High Street, Elgin, Moray was fined £4,000 after pleading guilty to breaching Regulation 4 of the Work at Height Regulations 2005.  In Scotland the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service has sole responsibility for the raising of criminal proceedings for breaches of health and safety legislation.

Following the case, HSE Principal Inspector John Blackburn, said:

“Incidents on roofs of this type are commonplace, especially falls through roof lights, which are considered to be fragile, being unable to support the weight of persons walking on them.

Although the council had provided staff with training in relation to working at height, its main focus was on the use of mobile elevated work plants and basic scaffolding. There was no information or supervision to ensure this work was carried out safely and it was effectively left to the workers’ own judgment to decide how the job was to be done.

As a result the work was carried out in an unsafe manner, with insufficient safety measures taken to prevent such a fall. This led to a worker suffering severe injuries and others being put at risk in an incident that could have been easily avoided had safety measures been in place.”

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One Response to “LOCAL AUTHORITY SAFETY TRAINING FOUND WANTING”

  1. HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 26th SEPT 2013 | PP Construction Safety News Desk Says:

    […] FINE AND PRISON FOR RECALCITRANT FIRM AND DIRECTOR CONTRACTOR FINED OVER ROOF OPENING FAILURES LOCAL AUTHORITY SAFETY TRAINING FOUND WANTING PRISON SENTENCE AND FINE FOR IGORING HSE NOTICE PILING FIRM WORK SYSTEM CAUSED SEVERED […]