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Demolition Firm Fined Over Cinema Collapse

Expert Urges Companies To Make Safety A Priority


A Liverpool company has been fined after a disused cinema collapsed onto a dual carriageway following safety failings.

Gaskells Demolition Services Ltd of Bootle has been ordered to pay a £5,000 fine and £3,000 in prosecution costs this week in relation to the work accident in June 2010, when part of the Orion building in Thornton Cleveleys fell onto the A587 during rush hour.

While there were no injuries reported in relation to the collapse, one pedestrian was lucky to have a near miss and one vehicle suffered damage.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive revealed that safe work arrangements had not been put in place for the demolition, while Gaskells also failed to apply for temporary road closures.

David Urpeth, a Partner and head of workplace injuries at Irwin Mitchell, urged that lessons are learnt from the industrial accident.

He outlined: “This accident at work has highlighted a series of failings which, although no one was injured, left both employees and members of the public at risk of potential harm.

“Companies cannot ignore their duty to protect workers and members of the public through providing the right equipment and the right guidance over ensuring every possible step is taken to prevent any possible injuries.

“It is vital that lessons can be learnt from these mistakes which will both lead to an improvement in safety standards and a reduction in serious incidents.”