Scaffolder paralysed after fall through roof

Grant Prior 2 years 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

Chancellor unveils £44bn Budget housing boost

Government aims to build 300,000 homes a year by mid 2020s
5 hours ago

Government to opt for offsite construction by 2019

Infrastructure schemes to favour modern methods of construction within two years
3 hours ago

Budget backs plan for “Silicon Valley” from Oxford to Cambridge

Government commits cash and calls for investors to get involved with new plans
4 hours ago

Final go-ahead for UK’s second tallest skyscraper in Croydon

Work to start on 68-storey twin tower scheme next summer
11 hours ago

Construction delays hit £30m Aberdeen Art Gallery revamp

McLaughlin & Harvey job to open at least a year late
8 hours ago

McMullen Facades follows Lakesmere into administration

Firms circle to buy profitable cladding arm from administrators
1 day ago

Clugston set to start £1.2bn Lincolnshire Lakes project

Excavation and engineering works set to begin early next year
1 day ago

Van Elle boss to step down

Chief Jon Fenton to leave for family reasons as former owner plots boardroom coup
11 hours ago

Ban for dry lining boss who failed to declare £1.9m to HMRC

Seven-year director disqualification for Manchester specialist
11 hours ago

Derwent gains planning for two London schemes

Two West End projects will not start until early years of next decade
11 hours ago

Site discharge costs house builder £120,000

Environment Agency sends warning to construction companies in latest court case
12 hours ago

Sisk tipped for £88m Gatwick Airport hangar

Firm closes in on huge Boeing GoldCare hangar
1 day ago

Willmott Dixon to build first Passivhaus secondary school

Builder to start work on £36m Harris Academy Sutton in the New Year
1 day ago

Boost your online presence with the new Enquirer Directory

New site for suppliers and buyers will showcase their products, services and latest stories
3 weeks ago

18 jobs at risk as London roofing specialist fails

Essex-based Superior Roofing & Building Services placed in administration
1 day ago

Accounting watchdog launches probe into Mitie’s books

Investigation into preparation and approval of contractor’s 2016 financial statements
2 days ago

Severfield to supply small steelwork fabricators

Half-year profits soar as Severfield unveils plan to supply steel to small project
1 day ago

Renew profit slides after £6.4m gas mains exit hit

Flowing AMP6 water work boosts engineering services revenue
1 day ago

£200m funding green light for Midland Metro extension

Theresa May launches £1.7bn city transport funding pot
2 days ago

Lendlease confirms £440m order for two London jobs

Order book swells with major Euston office revamp and 43-storey Pan Pacific hotel and flats
2 days ago

Union demands urgent talks over threat to Carillion jobs

Union Unite seeks meeting after profit warning and latest debt figures
2 days ago

Over 80 jobs lost as historic builder goes under

Around 80 job losses as Knowles & Son (Oxford) falls into administration
2 days ago

Clancy Docwra breaks even as profits slide

Civils firm caught in two significant contractual disputes
2 days ago

Wates bags one of Birmingham’s tallest resi buildings

Developer Regal signs £32m deal for second tower at Broad Street
2 days ago

Green light for Salford resi block trio

Developer Select Property will pick a contractor for Embankment West by the Spring
2 days ago

GF Tomlinson wins £16m Nottingham Uni biosciences job

Work is due to start on new laboratories and lecturer theatre in early 2018
2 days ago

Carillion warns on profits again as it breaches banking covenants

Contractor asks for more time from lenders as debts set to soar up to £925m
5 days ago

Chancellor vows to build 300,000 homes a year

Treasury reported to have found £5bn boost for housing schemes
2 days ago

Kier wins £35m Clydebank hospital project

Kier to start work early next year on first of two treatment centres for Golden Jubilee hospital
5 days ago

M&E specialists suffering from blight of retentions

Nearly a third of firms have up to 10% of their turnover locked-up in retentions
5 days ago

Contractor services