A worker suffered life-changing injuries when he fell through a fragile roof light, a court has heard. The 25-year-old was an employee of Practical Cladding Solutions Limited, which has been fined for safety failings. An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the incident discovered that the roof light was unprotected.
Worthing Magistrates’ Court was told how Practical Cladding Solutions Limited had been appointed by Styropack UK Limited in January 2015 to cut a hole in an industrial roof and clad an extension. However, the roofing firm and one of its senior managers failed to consider all of the dangers of working at height. The employee fell through the fragile roof light as a result, suffering serious injuries in the process.
Practical Cladding Solutions Limited, of Calmore Industrial Estate, Testwood, Totton, pleaded guilty to offences under Regulations 4(1)(a), 4(1)(b) and 4(1)(c) of the Work at Height Regulations. It was fined a total of £9,000.
Anthony Hibbard, Senior Manager of Practical Cladding Solutions Limited, admitted offences under Regulations 4(1)(a), 4(1)(b) and 4(1)(c) of the Work at Height Regulations. He was fined a total of £3,000. Following the guilty pleas, the HSE was awarded costs of £1,192.
Falls from height
The Work at Height Regulations 2005 exist to ensure that all work at height is carried out safely. The regulations place a vital duty on employers and the self-employed to adhere to strict safety guidelines. However, falls from height still happen from time to time, usually because of employer negligence.
The HSE said that working on fragile roofs causes a great deal of serious injuries and fatal incidents every year. Work at height must therefore be properly planned, supervised and carried out in a safe manner. People working at height need to be equipped with the right safety equipment, such as harnesses, while warning signs should be used to make the potential safety risks, like roof lights, clear to everyone. Common sense plays a big part in preventing accidents when working at height.
Source: Health and Safety Executive
Date Published: October 4, 2015
Author: Jonathan Brown