Two companies have received fines after a roofer fell almost six metres through a void in the ceiling and suffered serious injuries.
London construction company Right Angle Ltd, of Finchley Road, was fined £15,000 and told to pay costs of £5,375 after it admitted breaching the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.
John Donald, of New Road, Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire – the director of roofing company John Donald Roofing – was fined £4,000 and also ordered to pay £3,965 in costs after pleading guilty to breaching the Work at Height Regulations 2005.
Roofer broke several bones in his back
The incident happened in Brent on February 29, 2012, while the self-employed roofer – who wished to remain anonymous – was under the control of Mr Donald.
Mr Donald had been sub-contracted by Right Angle Ltd to undertake roof work on a couple of residential properties.
The roofer fell through a void for a roof light and broke several bones in his back as a result of the plunge.
He also sustained bruises to his diaphragm, thighs and lungs and was unable to return to work for more than a year.
The incident has now forced him to seek alternative employment as he still receives hospital treatment nearly two-and-a-half years later.
HSE finds range of safety failings
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) launched an investigation following the incident and prosecuted both companies after it found a range of safety failings..
These included fall risks across several locations at the site, such as the edges of flat roofs, the scaffold, a number of open joists, as well as open staircases without handrails.
Other safety failings included inadequate fire prevention measures, fire risks, several “slip and trip” risks due to rubbish and debris, as well as glazed window frames that could have fallen and caused injury as they were stored upright and unsecured.
If the void had been better protected, the accident could have been prevented entirely, the HSE said, adding that Right Angle had not planned, managed and monitored the construction phase regularly.
Making a claim for personal injury compensation
If you’ve had a similar incident and would like to make a claim for personal injury compensation then give Accident Advice Helpline a call.
One of our expertly trained advisers will run through your claim with you to advise if you are eligible. Find out if you could claim by calling 0800 689 0500, or fill in the form on our homepage and an adviser will call you.