UK : Broken scaffold board leads to £200,000 fines


Two London based construction contractors have been ordered to pay more than £200,000 in fines and costs after a worker fell three metres when a scaffold board broke.

Sager Construction Ltd and Shaun Dixon Services Ltd (SDSL) were prosecuted after the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) discovered the poor condition of the scaffold boards being used on the construction of a shopping centre and residential units in Studd Street, London.

Southwark Crown Court heard that on 19th February 2015 the 64-year old employee of formwork contractor SDSL was working for main contractor Sager to install a primary beam in the basement when he fell from the top work platform. The man suffered fractures to both of his feet and deep cuts to his head and arms.

The HSE found that workers were allowed to work off scaffold boards in poor condition and that both companies tolerated poor practices in relation to work at height while erecting the formwork.

Sager Construction Ltd of 50 Seymour Street, London W1, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 22 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007. It was fined £34,000 and ordered to pay costs of £6,577.

Shaun Dixon Services Ltd of Warwick House, 116 Palmerston Road, Buckhurst Hill, Essex, IG9 5LQ was found guilty of breaching Regulation 13 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 at an earlier date. The company has since entered liquidation and has been fined £160,000 and ordered to pay costs of £15,119.

HSE inspector Gabriella Dimitrov said after the hearing: “The worker is lucky to have not sustained more serious injuries as a result of this fall from height. It is entirely foreseeable that accidents will occur where work at height is being carried out without suitable work platforms and other measures to prevent workers from falling.”

Source : The Construction Index UK

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