Employee crush injury leads to fine for construction firm
A construction company has been fined after a worker was seriously injured while erecting a timber frame chalet bungalow.
A worker was seriously injured when roof trusses toppled over while being moved by a crane at a site in East Mersea, Essex, Chelmsford Crown Court was told. The incident happened in July 2017.
The HSE’s investigation discovered that scaffolding was not installed around and within the building to enable workers to have a safe area of work. Lifting the roof trusses in packs created risks which were not sufficiently managed. The company and company owner had failed to plan, manage and monitor the work under their control.
JWB (Mersea) Ltd of Westwood Drive, West Mersea, Colchester, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 13(1) of The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. The company was fined £1,000.
Company director and owner, Jason Whiting, of the same address, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 37(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. He received a six-month custodial sentence, suspended for 24 months. He was required to do 240 hours of unpaid work. HSE was awarded full costs of £25,627.32.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector David King, said: “Lifting the roof trusses individually and securing them permanently could have prevented this accident. HSE is keen to increase awareness of the need to plan, manage and monitor construction work and ensure the health and safety of construction workers. HSE will take enforcement action if companies do not manage health and safety on their sites, including directors.”
Further information about the duties of contractors can be found here.
Barbour download: Guide to working at height
Work at any height can cause injury; a fall from a height of just one or two steps can cause serious injury.
The Regulations were amended in 2007 to extend their application to those who work at height providing instruction or leadership to one or more people engaged in caving or climbing by way of sport, recreation, team building or similar activities in Great Britain.
Download your free guide from Barbour to understand: Duties of persons in control of work at height; Duties of persons undertaking work at height; General controls when working at height; Method statement for work at height; Selection of a means of access; Working platforms; Guardrails and toeboards; Ladders Mobile work platforms; Suspended access equipment; Personal suspension equipment and, Inspection of fall arrest equipment.