Prison sentence and fine for employee working dangerously at height

The employee of a steel erection contractor has been sentenced at Manchester Magistrates Court after he admitted working unsafely at height on a hotel development in central Manchester in January 2015.

Manchester Magistrates Court heard that a member of public contacted HSE who established that the workman climbed scaffolding to secure steel beams and failed to use the tower scaffold made available. There was a full-time scaffolder on site available for any of the contractors to utilise to ensure safe working platforms were in place.

Staggering disregard

The erector was found guilty of breaching Section 7 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and sentenced to a 6 month jail term, suspended for 18 months, fined £1,400.00 and ordered to pay costs of £2,939.18.

HSE inspector Matt Greenly said after the case:

“This case dealt with a serious work at height risk which could have led to a fatal incident. The defendant failed in his duty to protect his own safety while at work and also placed others at risk had he dropped any tool from the position he was seen in some 27 metres above street level. During HSE’s investigation he said that he did not appreciate how high he was.

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