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    MAJOR FACILITIES FIRM FAILED ON FLAT ROOF SAFETY

    Site specific planning lacking and safety standards not monitored

    Two companies have been prosecuted after a workman suffered life-threatening injury whilst working on a flat roof in December 2014 at a primary school.

    Southwark Crown Court heard how following a flat roof water leak the facilities firm Kier Facilities Services Ltd (KFS) requested action to be taken by contractors JHH Engineering Ltd (JHH).

    It was whilst the roof repair work was being undertaken that an employee fell suffering a life-changing head injury. He has been left with severe cognitive effects including memory loss, behavioural and mood changes, and a reduced ability to care for himself.

    Established vetting procedures not followed

    HSE investigators found that KFS failed to request site-specific planning from JHH and that safety of the work in progress work was not monitored.  KFS failed to implement its own work at height procedures and ensure subcontractors were vetted.

    Access to the roof was by an unsecured, damaged ladder of insufficient length, with no rubber feet or stability bar. No harness was found on site and the employee failed to use the fall restraint system provided by KFS.

    • JHH Engineering Ltd – of Mechanics Workshop, New Lanark,  pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of HSWA 1974 and was fined £30,000 and ordered to pay costs of £5,967.12
    • Kier Facilities Services Ltd – of Tempsford Hall, Sandy, Bedfordshire pleaded guilty to  breaching Section 3(1) of HSWA 1974 and was fined £200,000 and ordered to pay costs of £5,923.72

    Speaking after the case, HSE inspector Charles Linfoot said:

    “Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of serious injury and death in the UK.

    All work at height, including that of subcontractors, should be properly planned, organised, and monitored to ensure that it is undertaken by workers who are sufficiently trained and supervised using appropriate equipment.”

     

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