Head Of Training, The Healthy Work Company

January 12, 2016

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Limavady farmer fined for death of worker

A farmer from Limavady, Northern Ireland, has been fined £2,500 for a health and safety breach that resulted in a “completely preventable” fatal accident on his farm in March 2015.

John Thompson was sentenced at Londonderry Crown Court, after a Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) investigation into the incident.

It was heard in court how an employee fell approximately three metres while assisting Mr Thompson replace roof sheeting on a farm building. The 56-year-old worker died from his injuries the following day.

Commenting on the health and safety failures, Kevin Campbell, an inspector with HSENI’s major investigation team said: “This accident was completely preventable and underlines why farmers must not ignore the potential dangers associated with working at heights. Farmers must never take shortcuts and should ensure that proper controls, such as scaffolding, should always be in place to prevent workers being injured. They should also consider using a professional roofing contractor when required.

“Falls from height are one of the four main causes of accidents resulting in serious injuries and death on Northern Ireland’s farms. The dangers associated with working at height have been well publicised through the Farm Safety Partnership’s ongoing multi-media campaign – Stop and Think SAFE.”

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