Man fined £15k over worker's death

Worker death


A man has been fined £15,000 for a breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act which was a factor in the death of an elderly worker.

Pervez Mohammed Iqbal pleaded guilty to the offence and was fined £15,000 and ordered to pay £2,800 costs when he appeared before Wolverhampton Crown Court.

The prosecution followed a joint investigation by the police and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the accident at a textiles factory in Smethwick, West Midlands, on April 20 last year.

Satnam Singh, 62, was working under the direction of Mr Iqbal - who in turn was contracted by Kundi Electrical of Oldbury - when he fell through the factory roof. He died later in hospital from his injuries.

At an earlier hearing, Surjit Singh Kundi, trading as Kundi Electrical, was ordered by West Bromwich magistrates to pay £25,000 in fines and £2,301 costs after pleading guilty to a breach of the same Act.

HSE inspector Georgina Speake commented: "The roofs which were being repaired and those being used for access were totally unprotected, exposing anyone crossing them to the most serious risks.

"Iqbal had failed to undertake a suitable and sufficient risk assessment to identify the risks associated with the work being undertaken."

Copyright © Press Association 2008

David Urpeth from law firm Irwin Mitchell said: This was a terrible yet avoidable fatal accident.

"Employers must carry out a suitable risk assessment and then take steps to prevent workers suffering injury from a work accident.

"Falls from height are a particularly high risk and must be guarded against. Sadly, in this case, such protection was not provided.

"I represent many workers injured or killed in accidents at work, many involving a fall from height."