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    MAJOR FIRM FINED £800K OVER LIFTING ERRORS

    Workman injured by falling heavy expanded polystyrene block

    A major UK construction business has been fined more than £800,000 after a workman suffered three fractured vertebrae when he was struck on the head by a large expanded polystyrene block which fell from an excavator bucket in January 2017.

    Brighton Magistrates heard how the company was constructing a piling platform at Redhill Station, Surrey, which was built using expanded polystyrene blocks. A blocks fell from the excavator used to lower the block in place.

    The block struck Andrew Stuart who as a result is still suffering the effects of the injury and is likely to be on pain medication for the foreseeable future.

    Inappropriate lifting accessories

    HSE investigators found that the lifting operation was being carried out without appropriate lifting accessories to transport the load. The operation involved trapping the load with the bucket against the dipping arm of the excavator.

    • Bam Nuttall Limited – of St James House Knoll Rd, Camberley pleaded guilty of breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The Company was fined £833,333.33 and ordered to pay full prosecution costs of £5,478.22.

    After the hearing, HSE inspector Andrew Cousins commented:

    “This incident could so easily have been avoided by simply using appropriate lifting accessories such as chains and strops to carry out the lifting operation. Failure to do so has resulted in the serious injury of Andrew Stewart.”

    Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate action against those that fall below required standards.”

     

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