Many of the tasks that take place in construction are carried out at height. During these jobs the Work at Height Regulations must be followed and therefore hazards and risks must be controlled and managed effectively and all staff must be fully trained. With the right health and safety training all employees can be aware of how they are able to work safe, and managers can ensure they put in place safe methods of work and the right equipment that can reduce the risk of falls, injuries and fatalities.

Serious Injuries After Fall from Height

A recent case has shown the importance of this training after a roofer fell as he was trying to install a section of guttering. The roofer, who asked not to be named, was working on a job for Taylor Pearson Construction Ltd who had sub-contracted Roofwise Bourne Ltd. Roofwise contacted the self-employed builder to make use of his skills yet they had not ensured his safety. On the section of roof he was working on there was a lack of roof edge protection and safety netting, despite these two safety measures having been applied to the majority of the roof.

The roofer suffered many injuries after hitting a scissor lift on his way down the eight meter fall to the ground. His pelvis was fractured, he also broke his thumb and his heel shattered. His injuries caused him to spend many weeks in hospital and he needed to have metal plates put in for his fractures. The HSE investigated the incident and they discovered that the accident could have been completely avoided. Despite both of the firms identifying the risks of falls they had failed to follow through with safety measures and systems of work to reduce those risks.

Fines for Two Firms after Fall

Taylor Pearson Construction were fined £5,000 and ordered to pay £1,710 in court costs after breaching Regulation 22(1)(a) of the Construction Design and Management Regulations. Roofwise were charged £3,000 and ordered to pay an additional £1,710 in costs after they pleaded guilty for breaching the Work at Height Regulations.

Health and Safety training for supervisors and managers can avoid falls from height and the following prosecution from the HSE. To book a place on a course near you call 0844 576 6750.