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MANAGEMENT OF FORMWORK NOT UP TO THE MARK

Erector fell 3m after access scaffold board failed under load

Two London based construction contractors, Sager Construction Limited (SCL) and Shaun Dixon Services Ltd (SDSL) have been fined after an employee fell more than 3m when a scaffold board he was standing on failed.

Southwark Crown Court heard SCL had been appointed the project Principal Contractor under CDM 2007 for work involving construction of a shopping centre and residential units in London.

On the 19 February 2015 the 64-year old employee of formwork contractor SDSL was installing a primary beam in the basement when he fell from the top work platform.

The workman suffered fractures to both of his feet and deep cuts to his head and arms as a result of this fall from height.

Dangerous boards and poor working practices

HSE investigators found that workers worked from boards which were in a poor condition. It was also revealed that particularly poor practices took place in relation to work at height whilst erecting formwork.

Sager Construction Limited of Sager House, 50 Seymour Street, London, W1H 7JG pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 22 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007, and has been fined £34,000 and ordered to pay costs of £6,577.

Shaun Dixon Services Ltd of Warwick House, 116 Palmerston Road, Buckhurst Hill, Essex, IG9 5LQ was found guilty of breaching Regulation 13 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 at an earlier date.

The company has since entered liquidation and has been fined £160,000 and ordered to pay costs of £15,119.

Speaking after the hearing HSE inspector Gabriella Dimitrov said:

“The worker is lucky to have not sustained more serious injuries as a result of this fall from height.

It is entirely foreseeable that accidents will occur where work at height is being carried out without suitable work platforms and other measures to prevent workers from falling.

HSE will take action to ensure that duty holders are held to account for any failings.”

 

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