Inspectors called to a building site found workers were having to carry out their jobs with a lack of welfare facilities and health and safety provisions.
Construction contractor Phillip Affleck, of Golborne, Greater Manchester, was fined £4,000 and ordered to pay £2,495 in costs after admitting he breached the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations and the Construct (Design and Management) Regulations.
Trafford Magistrates Court was told that inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) visited the site near Warrington in Cheshire in May 2014. A member of the public had contacted the HSE to raise concerns about conditions there.
The court heard work was being carried out to convert former NHS premises at Culcheth.
Workers couldn’t wash hands
Magistrates were told that inspectors found workers having to get on to the building site using planks and ladders as access was restricted.
Mr Affleck, of Legh Street, Golborne, Greater Manchester, was also issued with an Improvement Notice requiring him to provide washing, sanitary and rest facilities.
Site workers, including bricklayers, magistrates heard, could not wash their hands to get off any contamination after carrying out groundwork tasks.
And the HSE said workers on the site were being affected by dust from sandblasting as no adequate protection was provided.
‘Lesson to contractors’
Work on the site had to be interrupted, the court was told, while Mr Affleck had scaffolding put up to make access to the building safe.
Following the court case the HSE’s Inspector Deborah Walker said she hoped the case would serve as a lesson to other contractors.
She said principal contractors have a duty to provide their workers with proper washing facilities – including hot and cold running water, suitable toilets and a sheltered rest area.
Source: Health and Safety Executive
Date Published: October 2, 2015
Author: Jonathan Brown