Health and safety officials are reminding all firms to ensure they take the necessary steps to ensure staff are safe when working at height, following a 49-year-old’s fall at a Kent warehouse.
Health and Safety Executive (HSE) inspector Rob Hassell was speaking following the prosecution of a logistics firm at whose warehouse the man was working at when he fell and injured his leg.
He says the accident was entirely preventable, adding that additional edge protection guarding should have been fitted to the sides of the new ramp from which the agency worker fell around 1.5m.
Medway Magistrates’ Court had heard that the man, who lives in Sittingbourne, had been unloading fridges from a shipping container on a trailer when he fell at Yusen Logistics (UK) Ltd’s site on the Isle of Grain in Kent in November last year.
Broken thigh bone
The company, of Grange Park, Northampton, was fined £11,000 with £1,067 costs after admitting it breached the Work at Height Regulations 2005.
Magistrates heard that an HSE investigation established that, while the firm’s other unloading ramps at the Thamesport site were equipped with additional edge protection guarding, the new one was not.
Consequently when the agency worker lost his balance while helping to unload the refrigerators at the top of the ramp he only had limited protection from the fall.
He broke his thigh bone in the fall and was unable to return to work for three months, the court heard.
Following the court case Inspector Hassell said falls from height are still one of the biggest causes of death and serious injuries in the workplace.
Accident Advice Helpline can help people injured in falls at work claim personal injury compensation.
Source: Northampton Chronicle & Echo
Date Published: July 3, 2014
Author: David Brown