Fife Construction Firm Fined Over Fall From Height Risks

Unsafe Scaffolding Identified During Inspection

17.12.2012

A construction firm in Fife has been fined after Health and Safety Executive (HSE) inspectors visited a site and discovered significant fall from height risks as a result of unsafe scaffolding.

G and G Contracts (Fife) Ltd pleaded guilty to a breach of work at height regulations in relation to the incident in April 2010, when inspectors found that the workers constructing scaffolding on a site in Culross were not trained or competent to do so.

Problems identified included missing guard rails and no guarding on the working platform. Ledgers used to hold the structure together were also found to be incorrectly placed, while a ladder was not properly secured.

Elaine Russell, a Partner and workplace injury claims expert at Irwin Mitchell’s Glasgow office, said it was vital that building firms across the UK pay attention to the case and ensure lessons are learned.

She outlined: “Time and time again we are asked for help by people who have been injured in falls from height at work, with many of them hurt as a result of the types of failings identified in this incident.

“Fortunately no one was hurt in this case, but it is clear that construction firms in Scotland and beyond need to recognise the importance of proper training and supervision of staff, as well as the provision of proper precautions in an effort to avoid work accidents

“The risks of falls from height are so great and simply should not be ignored by any employer.”