Worker killed in 50ft fall through fragile roof

Grant Prior 6 years ago
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The boss of a maintenance contractor has been fined after one of his employees fell to his death through the fragile roof of a Fife warehouse.

Boyd Lamont from Buckhaven, Fife, was fined a total of £20,000 at Dunfermline Sheriff Court following the death of Thomas Sturrock on 29 September 2008.

Sturrock, and a number of other men, were employed by Boyd Lamont – a self-employed contractor then trading as ‘Special Access Inspection’.

The men were working at height to clean the fragile roof of the warehouse of Tullis Russell Papermaker Ltd in Markinch, Fife.

Lamont failed to properly assess the risks associated with the work, and failed to provide his men with appropriate safety equipment like crawling boards.

Sturrock was walking on the roof when he fell through it and dropped 14.5 metres to the concrete floor below.  He died of his injuries at the scene.

Following a lengthy trial at Dunfermline Sheriff Court, Boyd Lamont pleaded guilty to safety breaches.

Following the case, Elaine Taylor, Head of the COPFS Health and Safety Division, said: “This tragic death could have been avoided if Boyd Lamont had properly assessed the risks associated with the work on the roof, and ensured that his men had were properly trained, resourced and equipped to carry out this work safely.

“Work at height involves significant risks and as an employer, Boyd Lamont had a duty to assess and mitigate them.  He completely and utterly failed to do so, and that cost a young man his life.

Mac Young, HM Inspector of Health and Safety, said: “This was the worst example I have ever come across due to the total lack of safety measures on the roof.”

 

 

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