A contractor has narrowly avoided jail after a worker sustained serious injuries in a fall from height.
Justin Courtney Ford has been sentenced to a three-month custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months, following the incident that occurred on August 11, 2015.
The Lundy Company Limited – who had employed the services of the contractor, has also been fined £30,000.
A self-employed worker had been removing a fragile roof when he fell three metres to the ground, landing on solid concrete, Exeter Magistrates’ Court was told.
As a consequence of the fall, he sustained a broken collar bone, broken ribs, a partial collapsed lung and a head injury.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) conducted an investigation to determine the circumstances that led to the incident occurring.
The regulator found that the work being undertaken had not been appropriately planned under the control of Mr Ford. No scaffolding or safety measures had been put in place which could have prevented the worker from falling.
The court heard how the work, which was ongoing between February 2015 to August 2015, had not been adequately supervised.
HSE inspector Nicole Buchanan said after the hearing: “This incident could so easily have been avoided had the company simply carried out correct control measures and safe working practices.”
A stark warning
The Lundy Company Limited of Shottesbrooke Park, Maidenhead, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 for failing to employ the services of a competent contractor.
The firm has been fined £30,000 plus costs of £4,800.
Justin Courtney Ford of Carnyorth, Cornwall pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 4 (1) of the Work at Height Regs 2005, and in addition to his suspended jail term he has been ordered to pay costs of £2,500.
Ms Buchanan added: “Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”
Reference: Health and Safety Executive
Date Published: January 12, 2018
Author: Jackie Kingsley