Turner Access Higher Safety Total Access
Total Access Ethentic Chipmunk Data
Chipmunk Data Turner Access Ethentic

MAJOR HOMES FIRM FINED FOR TOWER CRANE COLLAPSE

Safety-critical steel bolt connections not suitably installed and maintained

McCarthy & Stone Retirement Lifestyles Ltd been ordered to pay a total of £97,681 after residents near a construction project were evacuated after 45 metre tower crane jib collapsed in December 2011 in Saffron Walden, Essex.

Chelmsford Crown Court heard the company team of crane tower crane erectors were carrying out a test lift when the lifting rope broke, causing a heavy block and seven tonne test load to fall onto a trailer below. No one was injured but witnesses described how the crane and jib recoiled violently, bucking back and forth. A new lifting rope was installed and the crane remained unused pending the delivery of a new “load indicator” rope.

However, two days before Christmas the crane jib collapsed causing the 280kg hook block to swing and fall outside the boundary of the construction site. The steel block broke in two, partly demolishing a garage and fence belonging to a neighbouring developer. The bent jib was left hanging vertically from the top of the tower crane. The sites were closed for the Christmas break and no one was injured.

Emergency services evacuated 30-40 residents from nearby homes while the area was made safe. Those evacuated were able to return home for Christmas Day.

Earlier incident damage should have been dentified and repaired

HSE found that:

  • safety-critical steel bolt connections had not been suitably installed and maintained in jib;
  • correct pre-tension torque was not applied to tighten these vital components;
  • a suitable lubrication regime was not implemented; and
  • the crane had been subjected to damage in the first incident, when the lifting rope failed.

The company could have ensured that a thorough mechanical examination of the crane was carried out failed to do so. HSE state that “little more than a visual examination” was carried out and the crane later collapsed after the connecting components in the lower jib failed in tension.

McCarthy & Stone Retirement Lifestyles Ltd, of Homelife House, Oxford Road, Bournemouth, was fined a total of £50,000 including a victim surcharge and ordered to pay £47,681 in costs after pleading guilty to breaching Sections 2 and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 at an earlier hearing.

Speaking after the sentencing hearing HSE Principal Inspector Norman Macritchie, said:

“It is only by good fortune that no one was injured or killed in these incidents. The jib collapse may have been avoided had the company identified and repaired any damage caused by the earlier incident when the lifting rope broke.

Tower cranes are among the larger, more complex, items of plant used in construction and routinely move heavy loads at considerable height.

Those who install lifting equipment and those who plan, organise and carry out lifting operations must ensure that these activities are carried out safely – the public is entitled to expect nothing less.

My thanks go to the emergency services and members of the public for their assistance in this investigation.”

Latest Construction Health and Safety News

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 17th JAN 2018

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 18th January 2018

PARLIAMENT CALLS FOR WORKING AT HEIGHT ADVICE

Group of MPs seek to understand fatal fall causes and solutions

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 18th January 2018

FIRM FINED OVER FATAL FRAGILE ROOFLIGHT FALL

Work at height not planned, supervised or carried out safely

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 18th January 2018

EXCAVATOR CRUSHED DUMPER OPERATOR

Reversing excavator operations not separated from pedestrians

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 12th January 2018

REFURB CONTRACTORS FINED £1.1 MILLION

Tenant fell 5m through fragile surface whilst walking to home

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 12th January 2018

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 10th JAN 2018

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 10th January 2018

STRUCTURAL SAFETY BODY LATEST NEWSLETTER

CROSS publishes reports and expert comment on a range of issues

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 10th January 2018

HSE REACH OUT TO RESOLVE RISK MANAGEMENT

Construction Industry Advisory Network (CONIAN) launched

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 10th January 2018

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 4th JAN 2018

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 4th January 2018

FAILURE TO PROTECT PUBLIC FINED £600,000

Two elderly people injured during construction of disabled ramp

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 2nd January 2018

MAINTENANCE AND MANAGEMENT FIRM FINED

Joist failed and workman fell during flat roof replacement works

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 2nd January 2018

FALL ON BLOCK AND BEAM FLOORING SYSTEM

Contractors failed to respond to planned fall protection problems

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 2nd January 2018

FIRMS FAILED TO INSTALL FLOOR AS DESIGNED

Principal contractor penalised for not spotting contractor error

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 2nd January 2018

LINTEL COLLAPSED DURING LOWERING OPERATION

Two workers injured as support props and structure topple

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 2nd January 2018

CDM 2015: SEEING THE WOOD FOR THE TREES

End of year reflections on CDM 2015, health, safety and harm

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 21st December 2017

FESTIVE GREETINGS TO ALL OUR READERS

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th December 2017

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 20th DEC 2017

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th December 2017

LORRY DRIVER PROSECUTED AFTER ROAD DEATH

Road worker died during motorway resurfacing project

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th December 2017

MAJOR CONTRACTOR FINED £1.8M OVER ROAD DEATH

Road planer operation put roadworks pedestrians at risk of injury

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th December 2017

MANAGER PROSECUTED OVER APPRENTICE INJURY

Untrained young worker fell through fragile rooflight

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th December 2017

PUBLIC AND WORKERS EXPOSED TO ASBESTOS RISK

Client and contractor failed to identify and assess asbestos presence

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th December 2017

RESTRAINT SAVES WORKER EJECTED FROM MEWP

Firms failed to separate crane and elevated mobile work platform

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 20th December 2017

HSE PROSECUTE OVER POOR SILICA DUST CONTROL

Principal contractor failures led to gross exposure to RCS

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 15th December 2017

HSE ENFORCEMENT WEEKLY UPDATE 13th DEC 2017

hselogo1Prosecutions and enforcement notices weekly update and analysis

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 15th December 2017

BUILDING INFORMATION MODELLING AND CDM 2015

Major contractor explains BIM risk mitigation opportunities

Read the rest of this article »

Posted on 15th December 2017
Turner Access Chipmunk Data
Total Access Ethentic
Higher Safety Turner Access