Employee fell from dangerous ladder

A company has been fined for breaching health and safety regulations after an employee fractured his arm falling from a step ladder.

The UK division of global documents security firm Iron Mountain was ordered to pay nearly £14,000 in fines and costs at Westminster Magistrates’ Court over the accident in east London on 12 June 2012.

Damaged bone

The 48-year-old employee, from Barking, damaged the radius bone in his left elbow at the company’s site at Cody Road, Newham.

The court was told he fell at least a metre to the floor when a dangerous step ladder collapsed as he attempted to reach the upper level of a racking system.

Unable to work

The injured employee, who did not wish to be named, was unable to return to work for several weeks.

Iron Mountain (UK) Ltd was prosecuted after a Health and Safety Executive investigation revealed the ladder was in a poor condition and critically weakened by a crack which eventually caused it to fail.

The step ladder was described as not fit for purpose. It was one of two available to staff which had deteriorated beyond the point of safe use.

The incident could have been avoided had both been replaced as was necessary, the court heard.

Defects identified

Health and Safety Executive Inspector Monica Babb said the company “should have implemented a more robust system for inspecting step ladders and providing replacements when defects were identified”.

She added: “Checking ladders is an essential aspect of safely managing work at height, and I hope today’s prosecution sends a clear message to others.”

Iron Mountain (UK) Ltd of Tooley Street, London SE1, admitted a single breach of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £8,940 in costs.

Faulty equipment

Accidents at work caused by faulty equipment can cause a variety of injuries.

Workers who have been injured can be helped to claim for compensation by solicitors at Accident Advice Helpline. To discuss your potential claim with a member of their expert team dial 0800 689 0500 now.

Source: Health And Safety At Work

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