Tag Archives: HSE Media Centre

Poor management control puts workers at risk

A Blackburn logistics company has been fined after failing to provide fall protection for workers replacing the roof of its premises.

Blackpool Magistrates’ Court heard how, on 29 May 2019, Health and Safety Executive inspectors visited a warehouse in Blackburn and observed two workers on the roof without any physical protection or any work equipment in place to prevent or minimise the distance of a fall.

Further investigation by HSE also found that the roof of the warehouse was fragile and the employees were at risk of coming through it. The company, Speed Drop Logistics Ltd, did not have any measures in place to prevent workers falling from or through the roof from which they could suffer personal injury or even death. The removal of tiles should have been carried out from underneath the roof using a scissor lift or a cherry picker. Scaffold should have been in place to create a barrier against and to minimise the distance of a possible fall.

Speed Drop Logistics Ltd of Manner Sutton Street, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 6(3) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005. The company was fined £80,000 and ordered to pay costs of £1570.60.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Stuart Hadfield, said: “Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of work-related fatalities in this country and the risks associated with working at height are well known. Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standard.”

Notes to Editors:

    1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk
    2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
    3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

 

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Plymouth landlord receives suspended prison sentence after gas safety failings

A landlord from Plymouth has been sentenced after failing to maintain gas appliances and failing to have landlord’s gas safety checks undertaken at his rental property in Canterbury Drive, Plymouth.

Plymouth Crown Court heard how, in August 2018, a concern was raised with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) by a previous tenant that no landlord’s gas safety checks had been carried out for three years. HSE made numerous attempts to contact the landlord, Mr Thomas Brumby, but received no replies or representations.

Having failed to provide HSE with a copy of any landlord’s gas safety records for his tenanted property, a formal Improvement Notice was served on Mr Brumby requiring him to arrange for the gas appliances at his tenanted property to be checked and maintained. Mr Brumby ignored this Improvement Notice.

Thomas Brumby of Canterbury Drive, Plymouth, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulations 36(3)(a) and 36(2)(a) of the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998. He has been sentenced to 15 weeks in prison for each offence, both suspended for 18 months, and ordered to pay costs of £1,500.

Speaking after the hearing HSE inspector Simon Jones said: “Thomas Brumby put the residents and other members of the public at risk of harm by failing to maintain gas appliances in the domestic property. He showed contempt of the law surrounding gas safety at a tenanted property.

“Landlords must ensure they obtain a landlord’s gas safety record and they maintain all gas appliances in accordance with the law.”

 

 

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/

HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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Building firm fined after worker injured

Stan England Builders Limited has been fined following an incident when a worker suffered serious injuries after falling from a mezzanine level and wooden platform.

Aberdeen Sheriff Court heard that on 31 March 2016, Alan Ness was working at a residential property in Banchory. He began taping areas on the ceiling of a mazzine level. He gained access to this level by a wooden platform which had a ladder propped against it. As he was working close to the edge of the mezzanine level, he lost his footing and stumbled a drop of 18.5cm onto the wooden platform. He was unable to regain his footing and fell a further 2.5 metres head first onto the floor below. He sustained head, back and neck injuries.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that there was no edge protection on the wooden platform and no safe system of work had been put in place. Mr Ness had received no formal training for work at height or working on ladders, he had a lack of knowledge and awareness of the hazards associated with work at height. Stan England Builders Limited had failed to supervise appropriately and had not corrected deficiencies, despite visiting shortly before the accident there was no written risk assessments for this task.

Stan England Builders Limited of Raemoir Road, Banchory pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 6(3) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was fined £6,000.

After the hearing, HSE inspector, Connor Gibson said: “Those in control of work have a responsibility to devise safe methods of working and to provide the necessary information, instruction and training to their workers in the safe system of working.

“Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of work-related fatalities in this country and the risks associated with working at height are well known. In this case a different and simple approach of using edge protection on the wooden platform could have prevented the life changing injuries sustained by the employee.”

 

 

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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Surrey metal fabricator fined after girl crushed by steel gate at primary school

A manufacturer of bespoke gates has been fined after an eight-year-old girl was crushed by a steel gate at a London school.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard that on 17 May 2018 the girl had been leaving an evening gymnastics club at the school in Streatham. when the sliding gate fell on her. She suffered multiple fractures to her pelvis as well as internal injuries.

The manual sliding gate, which is more than five metres long and 1.7 metres high, was designed and manufactured by Metalart Fabrication Limited. It was installed by Metalart at the school, which is attended by 1700 pupils, in February 2018 after a paper delivery lorry damaged a previous, two-leaf swing gate.

However, an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the mechanism in place to prevent the sliding gate from overrunning and falling over as it was opened (a small stop welded to its guiding rail) was insufficient if the gate was opened robustly.

When the gate was opened at the time of the incident, it became disengaged from the rollers holding it up, when its momentum caused it to ‘ride over’ the stop. With nothing to hold it in position, it fell on the girl. The company made changes to the gate’s stop mechanism on the morning after the incident and a HSE specialist verified its safety.

Metalart Fabrication Limited, of Oldfields Road, Sutton, Surrey pleaded guilty to breaching Section 6(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The company was fined £19,327, including full costs of £1,147 and a victim surcharge of £180.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Sarah Whittle said: “The failure to fit suitable end-stops meant that the gate was an accident waiting to happen and could have fallen on anyone at any time with life threatening consequences.”

 

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

 

 

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Banksman crushed by a shovel loader on large waste and recycling site

A waste management company pleaded guilty to causing a life changing injury to one of its employees.

Folkestone Magistrates’ Court heard that, on 27 February 2017, an employee of Viridor Waste Management Limited was crushed by a reversing 22.5 tonne shovel loader driven by an on-site contractor at Viridor’s Crayford Materials Recycling Facility site in Crayford. The injured employee was working on foot in the area in his role as banksman, assisting a lorry to manoeuvre into a bay while a shovel loader reversed out of the bay independently, knocking him to the ground and driving over the lower half of his body. He suffered very serious internal injuries and multiple serious fractures, both with significant life changing effects.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that Viridor Waste Management Limited failed to organise the workplace in such a way that pedestrians and vehicles could circulate in a safe manner. This prosecution is the fourth in 4 years for this company, two of which related to fatal incidents.

Viridor Waste Management Limited of Crayford Creek, Dartford, was found in breach of Regulation 4(1) of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 by virtue of Regulation 17(1). The company was fined £400,000.

Speaking after the case HSE inspector Megan Carr said “This incident is a reminder to the waste and recycling industry as to the importance of good workplace transport control which can often be achieved by simple pragmatic steps to avoid such incidents from occurring. HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”

 

 

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

Guidance on HSE’s website:   https://www.hse.gov.uk/pUbns/priced/hsg136.pdf

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Electricity power station company fined after contractors injured

An electricity power station company was prosecuted after three contractors were injured by a sudden release of water and sludge while carrying out maintenance work at a Cheshire power station.

Manchester Magistrates’ Court heard that, on 18 January 2018, three workers contracted by Keadby Generation Limited, were removing a recirculation pump for maintenance in the Flue Gas Desulphurisation area of Fiddlers Ferry Power Station in Warrington. Approximately 38.5 metres cubed of diluted slurry and associated stored energy was released while the pump was being removed, resulting in the contractors being knocked off the concrete plinth where they had been working. The trio sustained multiple fracture injuries.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the pressurised contents of the pump and associated pipework had not been discharged prior to work commencing due to the drain pipe being blocked. This resulted in the release of stored energy during the removal of the pump instead of during the isolation process. Keadby Generation Ltd had failed to undertake a suitable and sufficient assessment of the hazards and risks associated with the work and had not implemented a safe system of work.

Keadby Generation Limited, of Keadby Power Station, Trentside, Keadby, Scunthorpe, pleaded guilty to breaching sections 2(1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £200,000 with costs of £7163.20.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Jane Carroll said: “This incident could so easily have been avoided if the company had identified and managed the risks involved and put a safe system of work in place.

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

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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Company fined after self-employed roofer falls from roof

Phoenix Roofing and Cladding Limited, a company specialising in roofing work, has been fined after a self-employed roofer was seriously injured when he fell from a roof.

Edinburgh Sheriff Court heard that, on 1 September 2016, a self-employed roofer was carrying out work for Phoenix Roofing and Cladding Limited, placing new roof panels and other materials on a roof at an industrial unit at the Butlerfield Industrial Estate, Newtongrange. Whilst traversing the roof, the roofer slipped and fell through an existing rooflight and landed on a suspended ceiling below.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the fall from height was possibly due to the unsafe working environment and unsafe methods of working being undertaken. It was established the main cause of the incident was insufficient identification of risk in the work being done.

Phoenix Roofing and Cladding Limited of Meeks Road, Falkirk pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at work etc Act 1974 and were fined £20,000.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Stuart Easson said: “Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of work-related fatalities in this country and the risks associated with working at height are well known.

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

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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Paper-milling company fined after employee’s head was trapped in a machine

A paper-milling company has been fined after an employee suffered life changing injuries resulting in a nine-hour operation in hospital for facial reconstruction.

North Somerset Magistrates’ Court heard that, on 16 March 2017, an employee of De La Rue International Limited was helping colleagues to remove paper from the machine by standing in the gap between the size press and the after-dryer section of the machine in Bathford Paper Mill in Bathford, Bath. After a fixed guard was opened, the employee expected the spar drum to come towards him (clockwise), however, by the time he realised the cylinder was turning in the opposite direction (anti-clockwise), the spar drum had turned and his head became trapped between a spar and the base of the fixed guard.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that De La Rue International Limited had not provided a safe system of work for the removal of broken paper from the after-dryer section of the paper-making machine when the machinery was operated in reverse.

De La Rue International Limited of Bathford, Bath pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. The company has been fined £300,000 and ordered to pay costs of £11,191.70.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Tania Nickson said: “Those in control of work have a responsibility to devise safe methods of working and to provide the necessary information, instruction and training to their workers in the safe system of working.

“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.”

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at www.legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk
  4. Further information about safe techniques can be found at: www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/books/hsg279.htm

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Companies fined following timber frame extension to residential home

Three companies have been sentenced for failing to take adequate precautions against fire risk when building a timber frame extension to a sheltered accommodation residential home.

Worcester Crown Court heard that in the months leading up to October 2017 principal contractor E Manton Limited, timber frame designer, manufacturer and installer MTE (Leicester) Limited and principal designer Thornton – Firkin LLP were working on the project. This involved the installation of the timber frame three-storey construction with a timber frame link extension to an occupied sheltered accommodation residential home in Pershore, Worcestershire without adequate fire prevention controls in place, thereby putting members of the public at risk.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the defendants failed to fulfil their respective duties to plan, manage and monitor construction work in a manner that prevents risks from fire and protects persons who may be affected by the project. The risks should have been prevented by designing out the major fire risks and implementing a plan to incorporate measures to minimise the residual fire risk during the construction phase in accordance with industry good practice.

E Manton Limited of Birmingham Business Park, Birmingham pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and has been fined £26,000 and ordered to pay costs of £6,944.

MTE (Leicester) Limited of Sunningdale Road, Leicester pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and has been fined £20,000 and ordered to pay costs of £6,413.

Thornton – Firkin LLP of Newhall Street, Birmingham pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and has been fined £8,000 and ordered to pay costs of £7,133.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Christopher Gregory said: “These cases highlight the need for all duty-holders to take proactive action to ensure they are not putting workers and others at risk from foreseeable fire risks by taking reasonably practicable actions, in accordance with industry standards, to comply with their duties under the respective regulations. Fire kills and members of the public have a right to be protected.”

Notes to Editors:

1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk

2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/

3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

4. Further information about fire safety in construction can be found at: https://ift.tt/399EUaQ

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Construction firm fined after worker falls from height

A construction firm has been fined after a 17-year-old worker fell more than three metres through an opening for a roof light.

Cheltenham Magistrates’ Court heard that, on 20 August 2018, an employee of Mark Holland Group Ltd fell through a sheet of insulation covering a skylight when walking across an unmarked and unguarded area on the first floor of a construction site in Southgate Street, Gloucester. He suffered multiple broken bones in his right leg and foot and, after two operations, was advised it was unlikely he could work in construction again.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the inexperienced young employee was not supervised properly and was unaware of the risks on site. There were no physical warnings that there was a hole or a fragile surface, and no verbal warning had been circulated to workers on site. There were also no physical barriers to stop anyone walking from the scaffold onto the flat roof. The company failed to ensure that work at height was properly planned and appropriately supervised. Despite this incident, the company continued to fail to ensure work at height was planned and managed on site. Numerous failings were identified by HSE during later visits to the construction site.

Mark Holland Group Limited of Victoria House, Churchill Road, Leckhampton, Cheltenham pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 13(1) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 and has been fined £55,620.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Laura Banks said: “This worker’s injuries were life changing and he could have easily been killed. This serious incident and devastation could have been avoided if basic safe guards had been put in place.

“Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of injuries in the country and the risks associated with working at height are well known.

“Those in control of work at height should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards”.

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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