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Written by
on 15 July 2011


Health and safety consultants offer risk assessments for companies in order to prevent accidents and to keep employees and the public safe. A risk assessment must be deemed as adequate which is why it is important to use the health and safety services offered by a reputable company.

A tragic accident which was not prevented due to an inadequate workplace risk assessments resulted in the death of an employee and the prosecution of two firms and a company director due to their failings. The father or two, Carl Pearson, was working in Bournemouth on a building when he fell. He had been hired to replace some lights on the roof which had been damaged, and tragically fell through a roof light.

Mr Pearson suffered terrible injuries to his head, and he passed away the following day in hospital. He had been hired by Cladcoat UK who were contracted by TRN Electrical, the original contractors for the work on the Bournemouth building Mr Pearson was working on.

Risk Assessment Could Have Prevented the Accident

After the fatal accident the Health and Safety Executive investigated the scene. There had been some sort of risk assessment and a method statement produced. However, these were both discovered to be very inadequate. Mr Pearson had been working at height on a roof which was very fragile. He had no safety measures in place to prevent a fall and no fall mitigation in place either.

Both of the firms, Cladcoat UK and TRN Electrical LTD were fined as well as the Director of CladCoat. Cladcoat UK from Longham pleaded guilty to the charges brought against them involving breaching section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at work Act 1974. They were fined £10,000 and no costs. TRN Electrical were fined for breaching the same section and also pleaded guilty.  They were fined £30,000 and an additional £14,850 in costs. The director, Jeremy Walton, was given a conditional discharge after putting in a guilty plea for the breaches of section 3(1) and section 37 of the same act.

Know Your Duties – Safety at Height

After the case a health and safety inspector told of the tragic loss of Mr Pearson, stating the accident was completely preventable. An adequate risk assessment offered by health and safety consultants would have highlighted the risks and a system of work could have been established to prevent Mr Pearson from falling. The inspector also went on to say that the two firms were not aware of their duties in the eyes of the law.

Health and safety consultants are there to help you meet all the demands of the Health and Safety at Work Act. If you are unsure of your duties give health and safety consultants, such as Vertitas Consulting, a call. They will be able to offer you a number of health and safety services, such as the risk assessments and method statement writing.  To ask about the risk assessment health and safety services call 0800 1488 677 today.

About the author

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.