March 29, 2019

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In Court

Construction company fined after worker fell through collapsed stairs

A construction company has been sentenced after an employee sustained serious injuries to his back after falling through stairs that had been partly installed.

In February 2017, Mr Emir Slattford, a bricklayer working for ASA Property Management Limited, was working on the top floor of a building at the company’s construction site in Worsley. Mr Slattford began walking down a set of stairs which collapsed from the second floor of the building, resulting in a fall to the ground floor stairs below. Part of the collapsed stairs fell on top of the worker and he suffered serious back injuries as a result. Mr Slattford has been unable to work for over two years since the incident.

The HSE’s investigation found that on the day before the incident, the joiner on site had advised the site manager that the stairs were not fully installed, and that expected completion was on 18 February 2017 – the day after. Poor communication between the joiner and site manager, and the absence of a formal handover procedure, led to a failure in understanding the risks involved in using the incomplete stairs.

ASA Property Management Limited of Linnyshaw Industrial Estate, Walkden, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 13(1) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. The company was fined £9,400 with costs of £3,138.50.

HSE Inspector David Norton said after the hearing: “This injury could have easily been prevented and the risk should have been identified. If a suitable safe system of work had been in place prior to the incident, the life changing injuries sustained by the employee could have been prevented.”

Watch, the most-read health and safety fines and prosecutions stories on SHP in February 2019:

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