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Written by
on 02 March 2012

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A cameraman was injured whilst filming scenes for a new movie. The fall which was more than three meters to the floor has resulted in the production company in charge of the set being issued with a fine after being prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive who investigated the accident in May 2010.

Safety Guards Were Missing From the Gap Which Resulted in Fall from Height

The unnamed cameraman fell through a gap in the floor which was there to provide a way of reaching an area which was accessible via a set of stairs. There was no safety guards surrounding the opening and as a result the 62 year old man fell three meters through the gap. As a result of the fall the man suffered from suspected broken ribs and also suffered with severe bruising. The cameraman had been hired by Warrior Productions Limited. Warrior Productions had been hired to produce the United Kingdom parts of the film and therefore where responsible for the health and safety aspects on set.

The HSE investigated the scene and discovered that the because the set was set in  the style Japan in the 18th Century there was a lack of guards in place to add to the authentic look of the set. Although in some areas there were temporary safety guards in position, there weren’t any surrounding the gap where the cameraman fell through. After the incident the production company made sure that the safety guards were positioned in place to prevent a similar accident from occurring.

Fine for the Failure of Ensuring Workers Safety on Set

The Warrior Productions Limited company were given a fine of £300, an additional £300 was also required which was to be paid to the injured person as compensation due to the company breaching the Work at Height Regulations of 2005, specifically Regulation 6(3) of the regulations. Furthermore the production company was also ordered to pay court costs which amounted to £10,500.

Lack of Risk Assessments Led to Accident

One of the health and safety inspectors present commented on the lack of the risk assessments to ensure the whole of the set was deemed safe for the workers on site. Although in some areas safety guards had been positioned there were areas where these basic safety features were not present. Other problems were also highlighted such as the poor lighting on the platform which resulted in a dark working area adding to the dangers.

Use Health and Safety Services to Ensure the Safety of Your Employees

The authenticity of the set should not have gotten in the way of safety for the employees. It may have been possible to think up new safety measures if the guard rails may have caused a problem on set. Risk assessments are always necessary to highlight dangers in the workplace. If you haven’t completed your risk assessments you can ask health and safety consultants for assistance.

Call 0800 1488 677 to discover more health and safety services which are available to all businesses in the UK.

About 

David Cant is a Director at Veritas Consulting. The SME’s favourite go-to consultant for health and safety know-how. Bucket loads of experience. Fluent in practical advice. Solutionist with a brain you can pick. You can find him across social media on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.

David Cant is a Director at Veritas Consulting. The SME’s favourite go-to consultant for health and safety know-how. Bucket loads of experience. Fluent in practical advice. Solutionist with a brain you can pick. You can find him across social media on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.

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