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WORKMAN FELL AFTER RAIL REMOVED FOR ACCESS

Small builder failed to allow for missing guard-rail

A sole trader builder has been fined after a workman suffered serious injuries when he fell from a scaffold platform in April 2017 on a construction site in Heanor, Derbyshire.

Derby Magistrates heard that the workman fell 5m from the scaffolding and incurred deep lacerations to his face which required 40 stitches along with a fractured eye socket and wrist.

HSE investigators found that the injured man was working under the control and direction of  the builder using an electric hoist and wheelbarrow to lift roof tiles up to the scaffold platform.

Other means of falls protection required

The scaffold guard rails were removed from a 1.6 m wide section to facilitate the lifting operation and the workman fell from the scaffold while attempting to tighten the fittings securing the hoist.

  • Nicholas Lawrence Birkin – of Beach Road, Nottingham pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 6(3) and Regulation 8(a) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005. He has been fined £2400 and ordered to pay costs of £840.

Speaking after the hearing HSE inspector Andrew Bowker said:

“Those in control of work at height have a responsibility to ensure that safe methods of work are used.

This incident could have been fatal, Mr Birkin failed to provide other means of falls protection once the scaffold guard rails had been removed.

Following the accident, the defendant hired in a conveyor type tile hoist which has enabled the job of lifting roof tiles to be done with the scaffold guard rails still in place.

This has delivered both a safer and more productive site at relatively little cost.”

 

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