Fall injury results in sizable fine
A company based in Buckinghamshire has been fined following an incident where a worker fell from a Mobile Elevating Work Platform (MEWP), incurring serious head injuries.
The incident happened on 19th January, 2015 at a work site in Wilmslow, Cheshire. Geoffrey Hatton, 49, was working on the MEWP when it overturned. The worker, along with a colleague, was dismantling a compactor at the site, removing pieces of cladding from it. The cladding pieces were large, and one of them knocked the MEWP, causing it to fall. Hatton suffered severe injuries, fracturing two ribs and his skull in the accident, and remained in hospital for two months after the accident.
Minshull Street Crown Court was informed of the details of the incident, along with the outcome of an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). The HSE report stated that the company, Cole Mechanical Services Ltd, had not provided a safe working environment. The company had failed to provide training for its employees in the use of tower scaffolding or the use of MEWPS, and the employees had been using the MEWP outdoors, despite the fact it was suitable only for indoor use. In addition, a risk assessment had not been conducted, putting the employees at risk. The HSE investigation also discovered that at the time of the incident, another worker had been working on a roof that was fragile, with no PPE in place to prevent a fall.
The company was fined £30,000 and had to pay costs of £8,995 for breaching health and safety regulations.