A builder has been fined for safety failings after a workman fell through a fragile roof light. The work involved minor building works and repairs at a factory in Bagworth, Leicestershire including the replacement of roof lights in May 2013.
Leicester Magistrates heard (12 Sept) that the defendant, James Beeston, and another workmen were replacing the roof lights with solid strips of roof sheeting using a jig. The other workman was kneeling on a board over one of the roof lights and attempting to use the jig.
James Beeston came to show him what to do and as the other man moved away he fell through the fragile roof light behind him to the concrete floor 3m below.
He was airlifted to hospital with a fractured neck and right arm. He also suffered soft tissue damage to his kidneys and hip and has not yet returned to work.
HSE investigators found that builder James Beeston failed to provide any suitable safety measures to prevent a fall through the fragile roof material.
Mr Beeston, of Limby Hall Lane, Swannington, Coalville, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 9(2)(a)of the Work at Height Regulations 2005. He was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay costs of £397.
Speaking after the hearing HSE Inspector Tony Mitchell said:
“Mr Wilkins is lucky to be alive as work at height on fragile roofs is a significant cause of fatal incidents. The risks are widely known in the construction industry, as are the measures needed to reduce those risks.
Companies or individuals, such as Mr Beeston, who don’t provide a safe system of work or fail to comply with the required standard can expect to be brought before the courts.”
Lighthouse Comments: WORK AT HEIGHT! Again. Why take the risks? Supervision is key when working at height, often workers adopt the subconscious mind of work well when watched. They will rarely take risks when they know they are being supervised. There also needs to be a safe system of work in place to follow and risks need to be suitably controlled before hand.