A construction firm has been fined for a safety breach which led to a worker being seriously injured when he fell through a roof.
Profile Construction & Interiors Ltd, based in Alresford, Hampshire, was fined £234 and ordered to pay £200 costs and a victim surcharge of £15 after pleading guilty before Basingstoke magistrates to a breach of the Work at Height Regulations 2005.
The charge related to an incident which happened on August 29, 2007, when an employee fell three-and-a-half metres through a fragile roof and suffered a broken collarbone, fractured ribs and a fractured skull.
He had been working on the roof of an industrial building and was standing on two crawling boards that the company had provided. However, the crawling boards were an insufficient platform to work on, and no coverings or guard-rails had been provided to prevent him falling through the roof.
Speaking after the court case, Health and Safety Executive inspector Joanna Woodcock said: "I urge companies to take heed and put in place measure which prevent their workers falling through fragile roof sheets."
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David Urpeth from law firm Irwin Mitchell said: I am appalled at the low level of the fine imposed for this very serious work accident.
"The fine may have been less than the cost of complying with the law. If so, such a low fine is hardly going to encourage employers to spend money on health and safety. This is very worrying as it is likely to lead to further unnecessary work accidents.
"The issue is even more troubling when falls from height remain one of the main sources of serious and fatal work accidents.
"Workers injured in work accidents caused by falls from height often pursue claims for compensation, such claims help to improve workplace safety."
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