Scaffolding Contractor Fined following Worker’s Fall from Height

Scaffolding Contractor Fined following Worker’s Fall from Height

April 19, 2022

Whilst a worker was dismantling a temporary roof structure aka a tin hat scaffold, he fell approximately eight meters onto the roof of the property below and then onto the ground.  He suffered two brain haemorrhages, six fractured vertebra, a fractured shoulder blade and multiple rib fractures.

So what went wrong?  The scaffolding company (the employer) was found negligent by the HSE in that it had failed to properly plan how to take the scaffolding down safely.  It was also discovered that the worker had only been issued with a single lanyard harness and not a double, which allows the wearer to be clipped on at all times (provided they wear the harness).

What action was taken by the HSE?  The company pleaded guilty to breaching regulations 4 (1) (a) and 6 (3) Work at Height Regulations 2005 and were fined £16,667, ordered to pay costs of £6767 and a victim surcharge of £170.00.

Lessons learnt?  Ensure that PPE when issued is worn/used as it should be.  For those working at height they must be clipped on to the structure making it virtually impossible for them to fall.  Develop and maintain effective safe systems that are in-line with industry guidance.

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