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Written by
on 13 April 2012

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Another case of poorly managed and planned construction work made the headlines this week.  This time two workers were injured after the scaffolding collapsed at a student accommodation site. The men were positioned at various heights on the scaffold tower as they worked on the building.

As the scaffolding began to collapse the employee at the lower height of six meters was forced to jump off. He jumped six meters to the floor and as a result he fractured his right heel and his left ankle. The second worker was higher up, and he was left hanging onto scaffolding which had fallen against the opposite building at a height of ten meters. Luckily he was able to slide down and he made it to the ground without serious injury.

Former Company Director Fined for Scaffolding collapse

Both of the men had been employed by Robert Leslie Butler, the former company director. He was prosecuted at Nottingham Magistrates Court after the investigators discovered a number of breaches of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and a breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act.  The investigations showed that the scaffolding had not been correctly built to the industry standards. In addition to the poor structure of the tower there were no adequate ties being used that would have secured the tower to the building. Mr Butler pleaded guilty and was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay £2,000 in legal costs.

Working at Height Needs to Be Managed

Last year alone there were fifty workplace deaths in the construction and 3000 serious injuries. These numbers are not acceptable and it is essential to consider the safety of your workers, no matter how big or small the construction job is.

The scaffold tower had been very poorly built with only ties connected at the top of the tower; this meant collapse was inevitable when it came time to dismantle.  All work at height must be planned through carefully and a safe method of working must be established and communicated to the workers. Mr Leslie Butler failed to do both of these steps and therefore the Health and Safety Executive had no choice but to prosecute as both the men were lucky to walk away with their lives after this incident.

Ask for Help and Address the Issues

The health and safety consultants are ready to help you with many aspects of the safety on your site. There are many services available from training, risk management to CSCS Card testing. To avoid breaching any of the laws and regulations work closely with the experts and make full use of the help that are available which can save lives.

With so many accidents still occurring today the HSE are looking to greatly reduce the amount of incidents which occur down to poor management and planning. A great place to start with your health and safety is by requesting an audit to highlight any areas of weakness. Call 0800 1488 677 to discuss the various health and safety services available within the construction industry and beyond.

About 

Chartered health and safety consultant. 20+ years helping busy people in construction and the built environment. David provides how-to articles, advice and guidance to help explain and make compliance easier for clients. A solutionist with a brain you can pick. And you can easily get in touch with David on social media Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.

Chartered health and safety consultant. 20+ years helping busy people in construction and the built environment. David provides how-to articles, advice and guidance to help explain and make compliance easier for clients. A solutionist with a brain you can pick. And you can easily get in touch with David on social media Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.

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