Scaffolder paralysed after fall through roof

Grant Prior 5 months ago
Share

Hemel Hempstead Scaffolding Limited has been fined £110,000 after a worker was left paralysed when he fell from the roof of a barn.

Stewart Thomas from Hemel Hempstead, 31 at the time of the incident, was carrying out scaffolding work in preparation for the installation of solar panels on a barn roof at Gaddesden Home Farm on 25 July 2013.

St Albans Crown Court heard that father of one Thomas was placing scaffold boards along the roof ridge when he fell through the fragile roof to the concrete floor eight metres below.

He suffered multiple injuries to his head and neck including a brain stem injury, a punctured lung, broken ribs and a lacerated liver.

Thomas is now unable to talk, move or feed himself and requires residential care.

An HSE investigation found Hemel Hempstead Scaffolding had never provided a written method statement or risk assessment for this work.

Critically there were no fall protection measures in place, and there was also no appropriate supervision of inexperienced and trainee scaffolders on the site.

Hemel Hempstead Scaffolding of Hemel Hempstead pleaded guilty to safety breaches and was fined £110,000 and ordered to pay £22,596 in costs.

After the hearing Stewart’s mother Karen Coffey said: “I have had to move from my home and family in Hemel Hempstead to Northamptonshire to be near Stewart.

“My other children find it very hard to see Stewart the way he is now, but along with my mother I visit every day. I have also taken a job nearby that keeps me close to Stewart but also gives me something else to concentrate on.

“My granddaughters are going to miss out so much on the things they would have done and learnt from Stewart.

“Since my son Stewart’s accident all our lives have been dramatically changed – hopefully we can try and move forward to make Stewart’s life as best we can with his family close by him.”

Speaking after the hearing HSE Inspector Stephen Manley said: “The company’s approach to health and safety was poor.

“They failed to properly and safely plan the work they were contracted to carry out and failed to supervise inexperienced young workers.

“The particular works would have been unfamiliar to the team and so the lack of thorough supervision was lamentable.

“As a result of their failings a young father has been left being unable to communicate or look after himself and he will never be able to play with his young daughter.

“When working at height, there is a high likelihood of serious injury or death if safe procedures are not put in place and adequate steps taken to ensure they are followed”.

Latest news

Balfour sells infrastructure fund management business

Sale raises $64m and "simplifies" group
16 hours ago

Graham wins £20m Lincoln’s Inn overhaul

Work starts next month restoring and extending the grade II listed buildings
19 hours ago

Manchester’s tallest skyscraper plan approved

Construction work on major private rented scheme set to start this Autumn
1 day ago

Two weeks left to be named best in construction

Entry deadline extended to July 14 for Enquirer awards: Enter now
24 hours ago

Opinion: Contractors need assurances over EU workers

Construction needs to know it will have the workforce to keep Britain building
1 day ago

Crane hire worker dies in roof plunge

Roofing firm and plant hirer fined £220,000 following skylight tragedy
22 hours ago

McLaren sets sights on sub £10m contracts

Contractor sets up new division to target industrial and retail jobs below £10m
1 day ago

Four chase £96m Lincoln Eastern Bypass

Work is scheduled to start later this year on 24-month job
1 day ago

Ministers reassure house builders over million homes target

Builders report strong sales continuing despite Brexit
2 days ago

Heathrow third runway decision on hold

Decision will not be taken until October at the very earliest
2 days ago

Tarmac to buy 10 Hope Construction concrete plants

Breedon Aggregates merger with Hope now set for August
1 day ago

Green light for Ferrybridge £360m power plant

Three-year construction programme to start this autumn creating 500 jobs
2 days ago

Infrastructure cash key to avoiding Brexit hiatus

Civil engineers urge Government to hold nerve on infrastructure and avoid stop-start construction
2 days ago

MPs slam smart motorway plans to lose hard shoulders

Transport committee calls for rethink on £6bn "All lane running" plans
2 days ago

Morgan Sindall bags £39.5m Bournemouth Uni project

Contractor set for University’s Faculty of Health and Social Sciences building project
3 days ago

August start date for Tyneside triple decker roundabout

John Sisk and Lagan Construction JV will deliver innovative A19/A1058 junction upgrade
3 days ago

Mott to build case for Solihull transport hub

Plan for new transport hub to connect Birmingham International with HS2 station
2 days ago

WSP concedes defeat in bid battle for Sweett

Currie & Brown prepares to deliver cost cutting plan at Sweett
2 days ago

Costain boasts record order book at half-year

Tendering levels remain high across main infrastructure markets
2 days ago

Plans lodged for Redrow/Wates Bicester garden town

Developers aims to build 1,500 homes in next 15 years
3 days ago

Green light for Laing O’Rourke Liverpool cancer hospital

Work to start in next few months on new Clatterbridge Cancer Centre
3 days ago

WSP hires Atkins director for Stockport bypass

Feasibility study for the A6-M60 relief road will be led by Nasar Malik
3 days ago

Construction alliance formed for light rail work

Places for Colas, Barhale, Thomas Vale and Auctus as Balfour Beatty misses out
3 days ago

Watkin Jones £100m east London student tower approved

Work to start on Stratford tower at the end of the year despite Brexit vote
3 days ago

Kier wants suppliers for £50m of work near Hereford

Meet the Buyer event this Thursday: Register now
3 days ago

G F Tomlinson scoops £15.9m Nottingham Uni job

Advanced manufacturing building will be constructed at the University's Jubilee Campus
4 days ago

Kier wins bid race for £25m Mackintosh restoration

Kier beats rivals with "extremely competitive" bid for fire-damaged building
4 days ago

Balfour Beatty chief’s wife buys £200,000 company shares

Quinn holding in construction group rises to 0.07%
4 days ago

Willmott Dixon abandons sale of support services arm

Contractor decides to keep division after bidders wanted to break-up maintenance operation
5 days ago

Firm fined £550,000 after two men fall to their deaths

Couple fell through Euston roadside hoarding into building site basement
4 days ago