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Sentence for Two Companies Responsible for the Death of Scaffolding Worker
Posted by David Cant on December 10, 2012

Two firms have been sentenced at Swansea Crown Court after a worker was killed when he fell from a height while working on a building site. Carillion Construction, a major construction company and Febrey, a concrete structure firm were both prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive.

Contractor Died after Scaffolding fall

Febrey had contracted Russell Samuel to work as a scaffold worker at a site in Swansea. He was taking a part the access platform of the scaffolding. The dismantling was required to prepare for the roof and a staircase. During the work Mr Samuel fell 19 metres to the floor. He died two days after the fall after suffering from a fractured skull and multiple other injuries.

Lack of Health and Safety Management

The HSE inspectors investigated the incident and discovered that Febrey didn’t have adequate health and safety management. There was no communication with the workers and no instructions or safety information was provided.  The management team didn’t have the correct level of health and safety training even though they had been warned on multiple occasions by health and safety consultants. Because of the lack of training they were unable to control the risks that come when working at height. The HSE also found that the director’s failures had a direct impact on the turn of events that led to the death of his contracted employee.

Carillion Construction was the main contractor and was told about many of the health and safety failings of Febrey. They were prosecuted after the inspectors found that they were unable to improve the situation and therefore they had failed to ensure the safety of their workers and the people that were working under their control.

Febrey were saved from a large fine for breaching two sections of the Health and Safety at Work Act. The company has gone into liquidation and so they were fined £85, significantly less than the £250,000 that the judge would have fined them if they were still operating. Carillion Construction was fined £130,000 for breaching the same regulations of the Health and Safety at Work Act, 2(1) and 3(1). They also have court costs of £52,000.

Listen to Your Health and Safety Consultants

The fine could have been avoided if Febrey had listened to the advice of their consultants. Health and safety consultants are they to help you to work within the law. Falls from height are the largest killer in construction and this case shows how tragic these incidents can be simply because of a lack of training and management skills that would have protected their workers.

Work with your expert consultants if you are not sure how to effectively manage the health and safety of your company. There are many health and safety services available, find the right one for you by calling 0800 1488 677.


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.

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