A builder has been fined after a worker was injured in a fall from a window he was repairing.
The 50-year-old worker from Leicester, who does not wish to be named, had been sub-contracted by Peter Steans to repair wooden window frames at a house in Hallaton, Leicestershire, when the construction accident happened last September.
Leicester magistrates were told he was working from a ladder extended to just under the window when he dropped a piece of window bead. As he started to climb down the ladder to retrieve it, he plunged six metres on to the patio below, smashing his workbench on the way.
He was airlifted to hospital with head injuries, five fractures to his spine and a fractured pelvis and wrist.
Builder failed on safety
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted the builder for safety failings. The court heard how a suitable tower scaffold was on site that could have been used to remove the risk of working from a ladder.
Peter Steans, 61, from Leicester, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 4(1)(c) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005. He was fined £4,000 and ordered to pay costs of £353.
If you have been injured in a similar type of accident at work, the Accident Advice Helpline can give you all the guidance you need to claim compensation.
Fall was preventable
Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Tony Mitchell said: “The injured man had to use a walking frame and was unable to climb stairs for five months. He will never be able to return to his normal job, yet the incident and the life-changing injuries it caused could have been prevented.
“There was suitable equipment on site and Mr Steans, as the contractor in control of the work, had a duty to make sure it was put in place for use. Builders should not think that just because they use casual workers, they are not responsible for their safety. If you are in control of the work then you will be held accountable should things go wrong.”
Date Published: September 14, 2013
Author: David Brown