1st February 2023
Building Firm fined £120K for Health and Safety Failings
A building firm has recently been fined £120,000 plus costs after a catalogue of health and safety failings which even included two builders being lifted into the air by a raised excavator bucket!
A concerned member of the public is understood to have taken a photograph of the workers who were stood in the bucket of a digger several meters in the air attempting to fit a large stone into the top of a new home in Greater Manchester.
Health and Safety Executive (HSE) inspectors visited the housing development which resulted in the sites principal contractor being served with a Prohibition Notice for inadequate scaffolding, and Improvement Notices for a lack of welfare facilities and also insecure fencing.
The HSE are understood to have visited the same site on four separate occasions during the development. Repeated breaches were found by the inspectors which included a lack of sufficient welfare facilities, unsuitable controls for work at height and inadequate protection from silica dust exposure. As a result, the company was served with several Notifications of Contraventions, Improvement Notices and Prohibition Notices.
The company was prosecuted and attended Manchester Magistrates’ Court on 25 January 2023 where they pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. The company was fined £120,000 and ordered to pay £3,165.15 in costs. After the verdict, the HSE inspector involved in the case said:
“This proactive prosecution demonstrates that HSE will not hesitate to take proactive enforcement action against those that continuously fall below the required standards and demonstrate persistent poor health and safety. Health and safety should be an integral part of any business, not an afterthought.”
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