A building sub-contractor has been fined for safety failings that left him with a fractured spine.
It was ruled that his careless actions could have also put the safety of other workers on the site in danger.
William Batten, 66, trading as Bill Batten Concrete Cutting and Demolition Service, pleaded guilty at North and East Devon Magistrates’ Court to breaching Regulation 29(1) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.
Demolition gone wrong
The firm had been contracted to demolish two buildings at Lympstone Church of England Primary School.
A ‘soft strip’ of the temporary classroom took place on 11 June 2013 and demolition of the main structure by mechanical means was to be carried out on the following days when Mr Batten’s son, business partner and planner of the work, returned from leave.
But an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that Mr Batten decided to undertake further stripping work, including the removal of the timber supports to the corners and cladding, even though he was not supposed to.
He removed key timber supports at the corners of the roof, destabilising it and causing it to collapse on top of him. He fractured his vertebrae and suffered a neck injury. The two employees he was working with narrowly escaped injury.
HSE concluded that Mr Batten put his co-workers in danger when he wrongly assumed that steel stanchions supporting the windows were holding up the roof. He was fined £500 and ordered to pay costs of £868.90.
Claiming for a demolition accident
Accident Advice Helpline can help you make a personal injury claim if you’ve been injured in a demolition accident that wasn’t your fault. To discuss your claim with a member of their expert team dial 0800 689 0500 now.
Demolition work is particularly dangerous as workers have to carry out a diverse range of hazardous task including operating heavy tools, handling explosives and working at heights – so employers need to make sure the correct safety measures are in place.
The effect of a serious injury received at work can mean you may also need demolition accident counselling.
Source: Herald Express